Ryan Jay Friedman
Professor and Director of Film Studies
150 Hagerty Hall
Areas of Expertise
- Film studies
- African American literature
- Critical theory
- Twentieth-century American literature
- PhD, Northwestern University, 2004
- BA, University of Notre Dame, 1998
Ryan Jay Friedman is professor of English and the director of the Film Studies Program. He specializes in early African American film and the racial politics of classical Hollywood, while teaching courses and writing on a range of other topics, including African American literature, film theory and American film’s social histories.
He is the author of Hollywood’s African American Films: The Transition to Sound (Rutgers University Press, 2011) and of The Movies as a World Force: American Silent Cinema and the Utopian Imagination (forthcoming from Rutgers University Press). He contributed a chapter, "Race Cinema, the Transition to Sound, and Hollywood's African-American-Cast Musicals," to the collection, Early Race Filmmaking in America, ed. Barbara Lupack (Routledge, 2016). His scholarship has also appeared in Quarterly Review of Film & Video; English Literary History; Arizona Quarterly; The Journal of American History; and Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television.
- "Race Cinema, The Transition to Sound, and Hollywood’s African-American-Cast Musicals.” Early Race Filmmaking in America. Ed. Barbara Lupack. New York: Routledge, 2016. 183-198.
- “‘A Moving-Picture of Democracy’: President Obama and African American Film History Beyond the Mirror Screen.” Quarterly Review of Film & Video 30.1 (2013): 4-15.
- “‘Between Absorption and Extinction’: Charles Chesnutt and Biopolitical Racism.” The Marrow of Tradition. Ed. Werner Sollors. Norton Critical Editions. New York: W. W. Norton & Co., 2012. 420-425.
- Hollywood’s African American Films: The Transition to Sound. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2011.
- “Enough Force To Shatter the Tale to Fragments: Ethics and Textual Analysis in James Baldwin’s Film Theory.” English Literary History 77.2 (Summer 2010): 385-411.