Cynthia Baron, Ph.D. 
Associate Professor

Office: 222 Wolfe Center
Phone: (419) 372-9639

Ph.D. Film, Literature, and Culture-University of Southern California – School of Cinema-Television

Dissertation: “Before Brando: Film Acting in the Hollywood Studio Era”

Dissertation Committee: Marsha Kinder, Lynn Spigel, Sharon Marie Carnicke

M.A. Film San Francisco State University

Thesis: “Melodrama and the Hollywood Aesthetic”

Thesis Committee: John L. Fell, James Kitses, Robert Lewis

B.A. Philosophy University of California, Berkeley

Areas of Concentration: Pre-Socratic and Continental Philosophy

Courses Taught: 

  • Critical Approaches in Film Studies
  • Hollywood, Censorship, and American Culture
  • American Independent Cinema
  • American Political Films
    Cinema and Cold Wars
  • Hollywood and Vietnam
  • Hollywood and the Red Scare
  • Interdisciplinary Performance Theory
  • Research and Publication

Research/Teaching Interests: Critical Approaches to Film Studies, American Independent Cinema, Screenwriting, Culture and the Moving Image, Censorship, Third Cinema, Women’s Cinema, Stardom, and Screen Performance. She also teaches courses that examine the ways in which the film industry interacts with American national security policies and particular cultural moments (for example, Hollywood and the Red Scare, Hollywood from Vietnam to Reagan, and American Political Films).

Dr. Baron works with graduate students in Theatre, Women’s Studies, and American Culture Studies, and continues to develop the undergraduate film production and film studies programs. She is the faculty advisor for Tuesdays at the Gish, the film series organized by graduate students in The Culture Club.  She is the editor of The Projector, a peer reviewed electronic journal on film, media and culture with an international editorial board, and is on the editorial board of the Journal of Film and Video.

Recent Publications:

Dr. Baron has had articles appear in such journals as Theatre Annual, Cineaste, Journal of Film and Video, The Velvet Light Trap, Quarterly Review of Film and Video, Film and Philosophy, Popular Culture Review, Food Culture and Society, Food and Foodways, Spectator, and Women's Studies Quarterly. In 2006, she co-edited a Special Issue on Screen Performance for the Journal of Film and Video.  

She has contributed chapters to Genre and Performance (2010), Acting on Stage-Acting on Screen (2008; published in Greek), Sayles Talk (2006), Movie Acting: The Film Reader (2004), Contemporary Hollywood Stardom (2003), The James Bond Phenomenon(2003), Headline Hollywood (2001), Screen Acting (1999), and Postmodernism in the Cinema (1998). She has contributed chapters to Cult Stars and Cult Stardom, Star Decades: The 1960s, and Blackwell’s History of American Film (all forthcoming).

Dr. Baron is co-author of Reframing Screen Performance(University of Michigan Press, 2008) and co-editor of More Than a Method (Wayne State University Press, 2004). She is co-author of Food in Film Matters: Food as Sign, Symbol and Subject in Cinema (Wayne State University Press, forthcoming) and author of Denzel Washington: Keeping It Simple (Palgrave, forthcoming).

Recent Presentations:

Dr. Baron has presented papers at meetings such as the Screen Conference in Glasgow, the Stars Conference in London, the Acting on Stage/Acting on Screen Conference in Thessaloniki, the annual conferences of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies, and the annual conferences of the University Film and Video Association.   

Recent Awards & Recognitions:

Dr. Baron has been interviewed by the BBC and her work on acting, stardom, post-modernism, food in film, James Bond, and post-colonialism has been cited in more than thirty scholarly books or articles. She has been invited to present her research at Syracuse University and the University of Wisconsin, Madison. In 2010, she received a Scholars-and-Artists-in-Residence Fellowship from the Institute for the Study of Culture and Society. In 2006, her article “Acting Choices/Filmic Choices: Rethinking Montage and Performance” was the first place winner in the UFVA History-Theory-Criticism Paper Competition.

At Bowling Green State University, Dr. Baron has focused many of her efforts on obtaining research and instructional improvement grants, which have included an Instructional Improvement Grant, a Creative Imaginings for Student Success Grant, and, with Lucy Long as principal author, a NEH Humanities Focus Grant.