Academy Honors UChicago Scholar Who Identified Historic On-Screen Kiss

Allyson Nadia Field

The following was published in UChicago News on June 10, 2019.

Six months ago, a 29-second silent film captured the public imagination, sparking passionate responses from director Barry Jenkins, actress Viola Davis, and other Hollywood stars and black celebrities. As the earliest-known depiction of African American affection, Something Good-Negro Kiss was inducted into the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry—preserving the images of two black performers joyfully kissing and holding hands. Now, the University of Chicago scholar who identified and dated the 1898 film has been honored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Allyson Nadia Field has been named an Academy Film Scholar, a program founded in 2001 to promote film scholarship. An associate professor in UChicago’s Department of Cinema and Media Studies, Field will receive a $25,000 grant to support a new book, Minstrelsy-Vaudeville-Cinema: American Popular Culture and Racialized Performance in Early Film.

Prof. Lauren Berlant To Receive Norman Maclean Faculty Award

Lauren Berlant photographed by Whitten Sabbatini for The New Yorker

Prof. Lauren Berlant and Prof. Emeritus Karl Freed will receive this year’s Norman Maclean Faculty Award, which the Alumni Association presents annually during Alumni Weekend. Established in 1997, the awards are named in honor of Prof. Norman Maclean, PhD’40, the critically acclaimed author of A River Runs Through It who taught at UChicago for 40 years.

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