Burt Lancaster in a scene from the film Birdman Of Alcatraz, 1962

Freeing Birdman of Alcatraz

Neither the Bureau of Prisons nor the Production Code Administration could stop the production of a movie about murderer and ornithologist Robert Stroud.
A vintage reel tape recorder on a pirate flag

Land of the Free, Home of the Bootleggers

When technology made music mobile, the American South changed from one type of bootlegging industry to another: copying and selling records.
Photo of Bob MARLEY; performing live on stage,

From Jamaica to the World: Contextualizing Bob Marley

Bob Marley’s life and music intersected with Pan-Africanism, the Rastafari movement, and post-colonial politics around the globe.
Gremlins, 1984

PG-13: Some Material May Be Inappropriate

The creation of the PG-13 rating in 1984 can be traced to a few key films: Poltergeist, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and Gremlins.
Deteriorating nitrate motion picture film

Combustible Cinema? The Nitrate Film Issue

The early plastic called celluloid was made of nitrocellulose and camphor. It made for spectacular pictures. It also made for spectacular fires.
Several entries in the Miss Teen Vietnam pageant attend the closing night awards gala for the 8th annual Asian World Film Festival at Saban Theatre on November 18, 2022 in Beverly Hills, California.

What Does It Take to Be Crowned Miss Vietnam USA?

Beauty pageants, a familiar part of post-war diasporic Vietnamese culture, help participants and viewers forge new identities amid forces of globalization.
The covers of the book Erasure by Percival Everett and the film American Fiction

The Indelible Lessons of Erasure

A Percival Everett fan weighs in on the novelist’s approach to racial satire and considers the translation of Erasure to the big screen in American Fiction.
Shortcomings

Shortcomings Shows the Loneliness of Refusing to “See” Race

Adrian Tomine’s graphic novel forces the reader to surveil the world through the eyes of its protagonist, Japanese American theater manager Ben Tanaka.
The Superman costume as worn by Christopher Reeve in Superman III

Still American?

A rumination on Superman, Black consciousness, and living the dream.
The Roman Countryside by Pietro Barucci

Ride ’em, Butteri! 

Long before spaghetti westerns, Italians were turned on to an image of the American West by Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West Show.