Dr Joanna Rydzewska

Joanna Rydzewska graduated with an MA Honours degree from the University of Lodz, where she also taught at the Department of American Studies and Mass Media (Award for Teaching Excellence).

Before joining the Department of Media and Communication as a lecturer, she was a Fulbright Fellow at the Department of Rhetoric and Film, University of California, Berkeley.

She has participated in several international network research projects: The EU Framework 5 Thematic Network: The European Research Network on Men in Europe ‘The Social Problem and Societal Problematisation of Men and Masculinities’; ATHENA (Advanced Thematic Network for Activities in Women’s Studies in Europe); and NOISE (the Network of Interdisciplinary Studies in Europe).

She is a member of the British Association of Film, Television and Screen Studies (BAFTSS) and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA). She is currently writing a book on Oscar-winning director Pawel Pawlikowski Scultpting Stories: The Cinema of Pawel Pawlikowski for Columbia University Press (2017).

Areas of Expertise

  • European Cinema
  • British Cinema
  • Eastern European/Polish Cinema
  • Transnational Cinema
  • Gender in Film
  • Identity and Film
  • Pawel Pawlikowski
  • Television Studies


  1. The Cinema of Pawel Pawlikowski: Sculpting In Reality. Columbia University Press.
  2. Memory, History, Ethics: Collective Responsibility and Guilt in Pawlikowski’s Ida. Studies in Eastern European Cinema
  3. Developments in Eastern European Cinema since 1989. In R. Stone, P. Cooke, S. Dennison, A. Marlow-Mann (Ed.), The Routledge Companion to World Cinema. Routledge.
  4. Transnarodowosc, postsekularyzm i tajemnica winy w Idzie Pawla Pawlikowskiego/Transnationalism, Postsecularism and the Enigma of Guilt in Pawel Pawlikowski's Ida (2013). In S. Jagielski, M. Podsiadlo (Ed.), Kino polskie jako kino transnarodowe. (pp. 23-40). Krakow: Universitas.
  5. (2014). Anna, Ida et Wanda en Pologne (Ida de Pawel Pawlikowski) (Review of Ida (2013) by Pawel Pawlikowski). (Contreligne No. Juin 2014).

See more...


  • MS-103 Introduction to Film Studies

    Introduction to Film Studies provides students with the critical awareness and theories that will equip them to analyse films and film movements from a wide variety of angles. Students will examine key, representative films from several angles and learn to present their own analyses and findings in cogent, eloquent manner in seminars and in written work.

  • MS-310 Dissertation Preparation

    This course introduces the practice of dissertation writing and research approaches for the study of media forms. texts and systems and their contribution to social life. It begins to explore the breadth of media studies through attention to the ways in which media matter. In what ways, and how significant are the media in the formation of individual identities and in the practices of everyday life? In the more public world, to what extent are media key to providing knowledge and enabling the debate necessary to the practices of democracy? The course enables students to build on their own experiences of media as consumers and users. But it also encourages critical attention to how the field of media studies has historically been forged: through argument and contestation between different academic approaches and disciplines.

  • MS-311 Dissertation

    This dissertation enables students to engage in long term, in-depth research on a topic of their choice subject to the approval of the Department.

  • MSS106 Hollywood: A History of American Film

    Hollywood: A History of American Cinema is a contextual and chronological study of the history of Hollywood, its effect on American society and its attempts to reflect the changes of that society. Key films are studied in depth and in relation to each other and to social and political developments in the USA.

  • MSS217 Reading the Screen: ideas and ideologies on screen

    This module assesses how various kind of screens function as media of representation, expression, communication and, increasingly of interactive contact. The general organising principle of this module is the use and abuse of different screens, with particular emphasis on cinematic screen. The module runs a blackboard where you can find all the relevant information, some reading and additional materials. We shall consider the general question of what is the relationship between the screen and the spectators, that is what does the screen `say¿ to the spectator, and what the spectator `read¿ from the screen. The module first analyses the notion of Ideology, ideas and hegemony within popular films to understand the film text, not as mere entertainment, but as the site where images are conveyed, and naturalized, to be ideological assumption of the world. Furthermore, the aim is to strengthen the affiliation between `us¿ and what we watch, considering the articulated relationship in the production of, seeing, hearing and sensually experiencing of the screen medium. The course will explore areas such as: ideological assumption of gender and sexuality, race, audience, sensation and new media, as ways of elaborating on the relationship between screens and spectator. A series of contemporary case studies will be used for close textual analysis and theoretical elaboration and testing across film, television and new media.

  • MSS302 Signing the Screen: Film and Television Authorship

    Signing the Screen: Film and Television Authorship examines, explores and challenges the theory of auteurism (that the director should be considered the 'author' of a film or programme as a writer is the sole author of the book) with a contextual analysis of the professional and artistic trajectory of key film and programme makers and in-depth analysis of their most important works.


  • 'Watching the Unwatchable: Contemporary Extreme Cinema and its Pleasures' (current)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Prof Julian Preece
  • The Use of Public Relations Communication Techniques in Raising Awareness about Brest Cancer in Saudi Arabia and the UK. (current)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Mrs Sian Rees
  • An exploration of media and public relations strategies used by Saudi Charities and their role in building mutual trust. (current)

    Student name:
    Other supervisor: Mrs Sian Rees