Andrew W. Mellon Undergraduate Fellow in the Humanities
2013—2014 Forum on Violence
CAS, 2014; English; Cinema Studies
2013-14 Undergraduate Humanities Forum Chair
Stealing the Show: An Investigation of the Three Unsolved Academy Awards Robberies
What began as a tiny dinner party in 1928, the Academy Award has become the film industry's most famous celebration, now capable of monitoring pop culture's transformation into nostalgia. I am interested in studying three aggressive ruptures in this tradition – specifically, three criminal cases regarding stolen Academy Awards: the cheeky, public theft of Alice Brady's 1937 award, the burglary of Vivian Leigh's 1951 award during a home invasion, and the 1960's Civil Rights protests surrounding the disappearance of Hattie McDaniel's 1939 award. In this project I analyze how, as exemplified by these violations, the Academy Awards has become a platform for violent takes on various aspects of Hollywood's legacy.