The Society for Cinema and Media Studies Award for Student Writing recognizes graduate students who show outstanding ability in the field of film, television, and media scholarship in keeping with the disciplinary concerns and traditions of moving image and sound studies. SCMS voted to award a tie for this year's prize: "The Prosthetic Gaze: Re-visions on the Trans Mirror Scene" by Joshua Bastian Cole; and "In the Corporate Rainbow: OutFest and the Politics of Programming Queer Affect" by Sean Donovan.
In his essay, Donovan examines the cultural work of LGBTQ film festivals in remembering the past and balancing the losses and gains of the LGBTQ rights movement. Donovan's work on OutFest utilizes a participant observation approach recollecting his time spent at the festival, while also drawing on queer theory literature and textual analysis of the festival's films, marketing, and programming. Both winning essays will be published in New Review of Film and Television Studies (vol. 20, no. 2) next year.