Featured Profile: Joanna Hearne
University of Missouri film studies expert Dr. Joanna Hearne helps students and scholars get the most out of visual media.
Hearne’s research examines how cinema shapes audiences’ understanding of themselves and others. She writes about the history of Hollywood’s representations of Native Americans on screen and the ways that Native and Indigenous filmmakers subvert popular stereotypes to tell their own, more nuanced, stories. Hearne’s work reveals the centrality of Indigenous images and image-making to global film and media history, from the earliest moving pictures to twenty-first century computer animation, mobile computing and digital storytelling.
At MU, Hearne teaches courses in film studies, digital media and Indigenous studies. She has written two books and published numerous articles on Native American and global Indigenous film history, digital media, animation, Westerns, documentaries and early cinema.
For her talent and expertise, Hearne has won numerous awards including a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship and the Don D. Walker Prize for best essay published in western American literary studies. Additionally, she received MU’s Kemper Award for Teaching Excellence – and when called upon for comment, one student named her “the most knowledgeable and engaged teacher I have ever had.”
Dr. Joanna Hearne is an associate professor of English and film studies in the College of Arts and Science. She also serves as director of MU’s Digital Storytelling B.A. Program.
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