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Dr. Sheppard has published books, articles, essays, interviews, conversations, reviews, program notes, and criticism in academic and popular venues.


Sporting Blackness: Race, Embodiment, and Critical Muscle Memory on Screen

University of California Press 2020

Sporting Realities: Critical Readings of the Sports Documentary

University of Nebraska Press 2020


From Madea to Media Mogul: Theorizing Tyler Perry

University Press of Mississippi 2016


“A Profound Edge: Collectivism and The New Negress Film Society,” Film Quarterly Vol 77, no. 4 (Fall 2023)

“Changing the Subject: Lynn Nottage’s By the Way, Meet Vera Stark and the Making of Black Women’s Media Histories,” Feminist Media Histories Vol 8, no. 2 (Spring 2022): 14-42.

“Glorious Bones: Esmaa Mohamoud’s Football Fabulation,” The Velvet Light Trap #87 (2021): 69-72.

“Introduction to Sport and Failure,” Journal of Sport and Social Issues Vol 43, no. 4 (2019): 267-275.

“Boobie Miles: Failure and Friday Night Lights,” Journal of Sport and Social Issues Vol 43, no. 4 (2019): 319-340.

“Close-Up: Mediated Contests: Sports, Race, and the Power of Narrative.” Black Camera: An International Journal Vol 10, no. 1 (Fall 2018): 156-161.

“The Exception That Proves the Rule: Race, Place, and Meritocracy in Rand University,” Black Camera: An International Journal Vol 10, no. 1 (Fall 2018): 162-176.

“I Love Cinema: Black Film and Speculative Practice in the Era of Online Crowdfunding,” Film Quarterly Vol 71, no. 2 (Winter 2017): 26-33.

“Historical Contestants: African American Documentary Traditions in On the Shoulders of Giants,” Journal of Sports & Social Issues Vol 41, no. 6 (2017): 462-477.

“Persistently Displaced: Situated Knowledges and Interrelated Histories in The Spook Who Sat by the Door,” Cinema Journal Vol 52, no. 2 (2013): 71-92.

Book Chapters

“Introduction,” co-written with Travis Vogan. In Sporting Realities: Critical Readings of the Sports Documentary, edited by Samantha N. Sheppard and Travis Vogan. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, September 2020. 1-9.

“Persistently Displaced: Situated Knowledges and Interrelated Histories in The Spook Who Sat by the Door.” In Race and the Revolutionary Impulse in The Spook Who Sat by the Door, edited by Michael T. Martin, David C. Wall, and Marilyn Yaquinto. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2018. 92-120.

“‘Tyler Perry Presents…’: The Cultural Projects and Politics of Tyler Perry’s Media Platforms.” In From Madea to Media Mogul: Theorizing Tyler Perry, edited by TreaAndrea M. Russworm, Samantha N. Sheppard, and Karen M. Bowdre. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2016. 3-29.

“Bruising Moments: Affect and the L.A. Rebellion.” In L.A. Rebellion: Creating a New Black Cinema, edited by Allyson Nadia Field, Jan-Christopher Horak and Jacqueline Stewart, Berkeley: University of California Press, 2015. 225-250.

DVD Booklet Essays,
& Program Notes

Book Review. Travis Vogan’s The Boxing Film: A Cultural and Transmedia History (Rutgers University Press, 2020), Critical Inquiry, online 24 November 2021

“The Art of Feeling: The Presence and Performance of Kaycee Moore.” DVD of Billy Woodberry’s Bless Their Little Hearts (1984), Milestone Film & Video.

Book Review of James Naremore’s Charles Burnett: A Cinema of Symbolic Knowledge (University of California Press, 2017), Critical Inquiry Vol 46, no. 1 (Autumn 2019): 256-258.

Book Review of Miriam J. Petty’s Stealing the Show: African American Performers and Audiences in 1930s Hollywood (University of California Press, 2016), Journal of Cinema and Media Studies Vol 58, no. 1 (Fall 2018).

Review of O.J. Made in America. “Structuring Absences Revealed,” Journal of Sport History Vol 44, no. 3 (Fall 2017): 481-483.

Review of "L.A. Rebellion: Creating a New Black Cinema—Symposium,” CSW Update, UCLA Center for the Study of Women, 11 December 2011.

Program Notes. The Rosa Parks Story (2002) and "Selma, Lord, Selma" in "LA Rebellion: Creating a New Black Cinema," Exhibition Catalogue (Los Angeles: University of California, 2011), 42, 43.



Digital Humanities Study

“Deep Cuts.” Tiona McClodden’s “Trace of an Implied Presence” exhibition, NYC, co-produced by The Shed in partnership with Nike, Inc., 2022.

"Sidney Poitier Gave More Than He Was Given," The Atlantic, January 9, 2022

“Thinking About The Underground Railroad with Walton M. Muyumba, Samantha N. Sheppard, and Kristen Warner,” edited by Michael B. Gillespie. Film Quarterly Vol 75, no. 2 (Winter 2021): 19-26.

“‘Just ‘Bout that Action, Boss:’ The Televisual Politics of Marshawn Lynch,” Flow: A Critical Forum on Media and Culture, December 7, 2021

“Lovecraft Country: Misha Green’s Historical Melodrama,” Flash Art #333 Winter 2020/2021.

“A Radically Different Way to Look at Incarceration,” The Atlantic, October 17, 2020

“Black 14.” Black One Shot, 10.1. ASAP/J, July 2, 2020.

“The Films That Understand Why People Riot,” The Atlantic, June 9, 2020.

“‘The Color Purple’ Revisited: Why Spielberg’s Movie is Still Problematic and Meaningful to Many Black Women.” IndieWire. April 3, 2020.

“How Hale County This Morning, This Evening Challenges Oscars Convention.” The Atlantic, February 20, 2019.

“Art and the Idea of Black Film: A Conversation.” Flash Art #324. February-March 2019.

“Give and Go: The Double Movement of Shut Up and Dribble.” Los Angeles Review of Books. February 12, 2019.

“The Gap Between Participant and Observer.” January: Minding the Gap (2018). Docalogue. January 2019.

"Looking Back, Thinking Forward: A Digital Humanities Assessment of Equity, Diversity, and Representation in Twenty Years of Publishing in Cinema Journal and JCMS"

Spotlight: Lakshmi Padmanabhan Interview by Samantha N. Sheppard

Spotlight: Alexandra Juhasz Interview by Margaret Rhee Edited by Samantha N. Sheppard

Spotlight Q&A with the Black Caucus, Interview by Samantha N. Sheppard


Scholar Spotlight: Jennifer McClearen, interview by Samantha N. Sheppard

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