Film Studies

Masha Shpolberg, Assistant Professor of Film StudiesGetAttachmentThumbnail.jpg
King Hall 106E |

Curriculum Vitae


  • Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and Film & Media Studies, Yale University and the Ecole Normale Supérieure
  • M.A. in Cinema Studies, Université Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris 3
  • B.A. in Slavic Languages and Literatures, with minors in French and the Visual Arts, Princeton University
Masha Shpolberg teaches and writes about global documentary and Russian and Eastern European cinema, with a special focus on feminist, ecological, and labor aesthetics.

Her first book, Labor in Late Socialism: The Cinema of Polish Workers' Unrest 1968-1981, argues that cinema played a crucial role in the formation of the Polish "Solidarity" movement—the only successful grassroots opposition movement in the Soviet bloc. The persistence of workers' strikes during this period forced filmmakers to confront the representational legacy of socialist realism, articulating alternative visions of labor and the working body. Individual chapters also address depictions of female labor, as well as ways in which the workers' struggle intersected with the nascent environmental movement. Dr. Shpolberg is also currently co-editing a volume on Cinema and the Environment in Eastern Europe for Berghahn Books.

Prior to coming to UNCW, Dr. Shpolberg taught as a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Cinema and Media Studies at Wellesley College. Her academic articles may be found in The Polish Review, Studies in Eastern European Cinema, NECSUS: The European Journal of Media Studies, and The Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television. She also contributes film criticism to Senses of Cinema, Film Quarterly, Tablet, and The Los Angeles Review of Books.