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March 13, 2006

Society for Cinema and Media Studies honors B. Ruby Rich

By Jennifer McNulty

Film scholar B. Ruby Rich, assistant professor of community studies, has received the 2006 Honorary Life Member Award from the Society for Cinema and Media Studies, the professional organization for academics in film, television, and digital media studies.

B. Ruby RichB. Ruby Rich
Photo: Jennifer McNulty

Rich received the award March 2 during the society's national conference in Vancouver, British Columbia. Previous recipients include cultural theorist Stuart Hall, British feminist film theorist Laura Mulvey, and French film critic Christian Metz.

In the award letter, SCMS president Stephen Prince, a professor of communication at Virginia Tech, cited Rich's "very active and engaged work as a film critic and theorist, as well as educator, programmer, and arts administrator" and said she contributes "innovative ideas, creative research and community building" to the field.

Rich, who calls film "the literature of our time," is the author of Chick Flicks: Theories and Memories of the Feminist Movement and countless scholarly and popular articles about film. She writes about film for the Guardian of London, Sight & Sound, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, and other publications. Rich is working on her next book, entitled “The Rise and Fall of the New Queer Cinema.”

Last week, Rich hosted a free public screening of the Oscar-nominated documentary Darwin's Nightmare, with director Hubert Sauper, at the Del Mar Theater in Santa Cruz. Rich profiled Sauper in the L.A. Weekly last month. Earlier this year, Rich attended the Sundance Film Festival, where she has been a participant since 1987. She was a panelist on "Going Going Gone: The Future of Film Exhibition." She filed reports on the festival for the San Francisco Bay Guardian and for The World, the weekday news magazine program produced by Public Radio International, the BBC World Service, and WGBH of Boston.

Rich was also recently named to the editorial advisory boards of the British Film Institute's Film Classics series and the Camera Obscura film journal, as well as to the advisory board of the new Documentary Film Institute at San Francisco State University. She is also a member of the Queer and Sexuality Studies Planning Committee at UCSC.

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