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Steven Cohan
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Past President, 2017-2019
President, 2015-2017
President-Elect, 2013-2015


Biography: Steven Cohan is Dean’s Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English at Syracuse University.  He received his PhD in English from UCLA specializing in the novel but through his secondary training in narrative theory made the transition to film studies.  At Syracuse he has had a strong investment in curriculum reform.  He helped to write his department’s innovative undergraduate curriculum and to integrate the critical study of film and television into that curriculum.  Serving several terms as the English Department‘s Director of Graduate Studies, he led development of a new track in film, popular culture, and new media. His newest book, Hollywood by Hollywood: The Backstudio Picture and the Mystique of Making Movies,” will be published by Oxford University Press in October 2018.


Department of English
401 Hall of Languages
Syracuse University
Syracuse, New York 13244


1974, Ph.D. University of California at Los Angeles

1972, M.A.  University of California at Los Angeles

1970, B.A. Summa Cum Laude, Honors in English, Phi Beta Kappa, University of California at Los Angeles

Teaching and Research Interests

Hollywood Cinema, Musicals, Popular Culture, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Queer Theory, Reception and Fan Studies, Film and Narrative Theory

Selected Publications

Authored Books

Hollywood by Hollywood: The Backstudio Picture and the Mystique of Making Movies, forthcoming from Oxford University Press.

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation British Film Institute /Palgrave-Macmillan, 2008. Series: "TV Classics.”

Incongruous Entertainment: Camp, Cultural Value, and the MGM Musical. Duke University Press, 2005.

Masked Men: Masculinity and the Movies in the Fifties. Indiana University Press, 1997. Series: Arts and Politics of the Everyday.

Telling Stories: A Theoretical Analysis of Narrative Fiction. Coauthor: Linda M. Shires. Routledge, 1988. Series: New Accents. Translated into Korean in 1997 and Chinese in 1998. Reprinted in cloth as part of three-volume library set, "Theories of Narrative,” 2002.

Edited Books

The Sound of Musicals. British Film Institute/Palgrave Macmillan, 2010.

Hollywood Musicals, The Film Reader. Routledge, 2002.

The Road Movie Book. Coeditor: Ina Rae Hark. Routledge, 1997.

Screening the Male: Exploring Masculinities in Hollywood Cinema. Coeditor: Ina Rae Hark. Routledge, 1993.


His essays and reviews have appeared in Cinema Journal, Camera Obscura, Screen, Film & History, Novel, and ELH, and he has book chapters in Male Trouble (1993), The Masculine Masquerade (1995), Stud: Architectures of Masculinity (1996), Contemporary Hollywood Cinema (1998), Out Takes (1999), Terms of Endearment (1999), Reinventing Film Studies (2000), Key Frames (2001), The Trouble with Men (2004), Interrogating Postfeminism (2007), Gender Meets Genre in Postwar Cinemas (2011), and Teaching Film (2012),  The Boys in the Band: Flashpoints of Cinema, History, Queer Politics (2016), Stars of Hollywood Cinema (2017), Cold War Cinema (2018), and The Apartment Complex (2018).

His work has been reprinted in collections on gender, media and communications theory, film genres, and Hollywood.

Other Information:

Editorial Board, Cinema Journal, 2008-2012.

Section author of "Musicals” for Oxford Bibliographies Online: Film and Media Studies, 2011.

Series Editor with Ina Rae Hark of "In Focus: Routledge Film Readers,” which had thirteen volumes published by Routledge, between 2002-2006.

Chancellor’s Citation for Exceptional Academic Achievement, Syracuse University, 2006.

Outstanding Graduate Teacher Award, SU Department of English, 2000.

Award for Excellence in Graduate Education, SU Graduate School, 2014


Contact Us

Society for Cinema and Media Studies
640 Parrington Oval
Wallace Old Science Hall, Room 300
Norman, OK 73019
(405) 325-8075