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Prof. Jonathan Frome
Assistant Professor
Department of Visual Studies
Lingnan University


Assistant Professor, Department of Visual Studies, Lingnan University

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Academic & Professional Qualifications

Ph.D. in Communication Arts (Film Studies), University of Wisconsin–Madison
Dissertation: “Why Films Make Us Cry but Videogames Don't: Emotions in Traditional and Interactive Media.”


M.A. in Communication Arts (Film Studies), University of Wisconsin–Madison


M.A. in English, University of Florida, Gainesville


B.A. in Philosophy, magna cum laude, Amherst College


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Areas of Interest

Film Studies, Videogame Studies, Emotion, Cognitive Psychology, Aesthetics, Documentary, Animation

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Working Experience

Lingnan University, Assistant Professor of Visual Studies


University of Texas at Dallas, Senior Lecturer, School of Interdisciplinary Studies


University of Texas at Dallas, Assistant Professor of Film and Digital Media, School of Arts and Humanities


University of Georgia, Visiting Assistant Professor of Film Studies, Department of Theatre and Film Studies


University of Central Florida, Visiting Assistant Professor of Digital Media, School of Film and Digital Media


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• Refereed journal articles

“Melodrama and the Psychology of Tears.” Projections: A Journal for Movies and Mind 8(1) (Summer 2014): 23–40.

“Interactivity, Performance, and Emotion.” Translated by Yinan Li. Arts Study [第九辑] 9(1) (June 2013): 132–138.

“Snow White : Critics and Criteria for the Animated Feature Film.” Quarterly Review of Film and Video 30(5) (October 2013): 462–473.

“Representation, Reality, and Emotions Across Media.” Film Studies: An International Review 8(1). Film, Cognition, and Emotion (Summer 2006): 12–25.

“Helpless Spectators: Generating Suspense in Videogames and Film.” TEXT Technology 13(1) (2004): 13–34. Co-authored with Aaron Smuts.

“Melodrama, Tears, and Life of Oharu.” 16:9, 2(6) (April 2004)

• Book Chapters

“Videogame Sadness From Planetfall to Passage.” In Video Games and the Mind: Essays on Cognition, Affect and Emotion, edited by Bernard Perron and Felix Schröter, 158–173. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland, 2016.

“‘I Wasn’t Expecting That!’ Cognition and Shock in Alien’s (1979) Chestburster Scene.” In Film Moments: Criticism, History, Theory, edited by Tom Brown and James Walters, 162–165. London: British Film Institute, 2011.

“Noël Carroll.” In The Routledge Companion to Philosophy and Film, edited by Paisley Livingston and Carl Plantinga, 334–343. New York: Routledge, 2008.

“Why Do We Care Whether Link Saves the Princess?” In The Legend of Zelda and Philosophy, 3–16. Chicago: Open Court, 2008.

• Proceedings

“The Ontology of Interactivity.” In Proceedings of The Philosophy of Computer Games Conference 2009, edited by John Richard Sageng. Oslo, Norway: University of Oslo, 2009.

“Eight Ways Videogames Generate Emotion.” In Proceedings of the 2007 Digital Games Research Association Conference, edited by Baba Akira, 831–835. Tokyo: University of Tokyo, 2007.

• Encyclopedia Articles

“Noël Carroll.” In Dictionary of Media and Communication Theory, edited by Soren Kolstrup. Copenhagen: Samfundslitteratur, 2008.

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Invited Talks

“Emotion, Medium-Specificity, and Videogame Evaluation.” City University of Hong Kong symposium, Current Perspectives in Game Studies. Hong Kong SAR, China. Dec 16, 2016

“Sadness in 1600 Pixels: Jason Roher’s Passage.” University of Hamburg symposium, Games, Cognition, and Emotion. Hamburg, Germany. July 5–6, 2013.

“Videogames and Sadness.” Center for Computer Games Research, IT University of Copenhagen. Copenhagen, Denmark. June 27, 2013.

“Computer Games, Emotions, and Films.” Department of Media, Cognition, and Communication. University of Copenhagen. Copenhagen, Denmark. June 21, 2013.

“The Role of Reality.” University of Copenhagen symposium, Cognition, Culture, and Audiovisual Media, Copenhagen, Denmark. Nov 16–17, 2006.

“Reality and Film Emotions.” Society for the Philosophic Study of Contemporary Visual Art. Chicago, IL. Apr 27, 2006.

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Refereed Conference Presentations

“Emotional Response to Popular Vs. High Art.” Conference of the Society of the Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. London, UK. June 18–21, 2015.

“Why Would Crying Make Videogames Art?” Conference of the Society of the Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. Lancaster, PA. June 11–14, 2014.

“Twofoldness, Threefoldness, or More? Seeing-In Videogames.” American Society for Aesthetics. San Diego, CA. Oct 30–Nov 2, 2013.

“Image and Interactivity.” Arts and Performance Conference at Southeastern University. Nanjing, China. June 9–11, 2012.

“Impact of Image Quality on Emotional Intensity.” Conference of the Society of the Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. Roanoke, VA. June 2–5, 2010.

“On Tavinor’s ‘Towards an Ontology of Videogames’” American Society for Aesthetics. Denver, CO. Oct 21–24, 2009.

“A Cognitive Approach to Matters of Taste.” Conference of the Society of the Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. Copenhagen, Denmark. June 24–27, 2009.

“The Problem of the Question of Erotetic Narration.” Conference of the Society of the Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. Madison, WI. June 11–14, 2008.

“Representation and Motivation in The Legend of Zelda.” Conference of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies. Philadelphia, PA. Mar 6–9, 2008.

“Eight Ways Videogames Generate Emotion.” Conference of the Digital Games Research Association. Tokyo, Japan. Sep 27, 2007.

“Melodrama and the Pursuit of Tears.” Conference of the Society of Cinema and Media Studies. Chicago, IL. Mar 8–11, 2007.

“Videogames, Fiction, and Reality.” University of Modena interdisciplinary conference The Philosophy of Computer Games. Reggio Emilia, Italy. Jan 25–27, 2007.

“Interactivity and Emotions in Popular Art.” Conference of the American Philosophical Association, Eastern division. Washington, D.C. Dec 27–30, 2006.

“The Pursuit of Tears: Sadness in Videogames.” Conference of the Society for the Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. Potsdam, Germany. Jul 20–23, 2006.

“The Paradox of Play: Videogames, Cinematography, and Emotion.” Conference of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies. Vancouver. Mar 2–5, 2006.

“Can Imagination Theories Explain Our Experience of Videogames?” Conference of the American Society of Aesthetics. Providence, RI. Oct 20, 2005.

“A Conversation Across Generations of Media Scholars.” Panel presentation with David Bordwell, Henry Jenkins, and Kurt Squire. Games, Learning and Society conference. Madison, WI. Jun 24, 2005.

“Theorizing the Videogame Experience.” Conference of the Society of Cinema and Media Studies. London. Apr 2, 2005.

“Wicked Cities: Style in Anime Adaptation.” Conference of the Society of Animation Studies. University of Illinois, Urbana. Oct 1, 2004.

“Emotions in the First Person Shooter.” Conference of the Society for Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. Calvin College, Grand Rapids, MI. July 23, 2004.

“False Histories: Truth, Uncertainty, and The Thin Blue Line.” Conference of the Society of Cinema and Media Studies. Atlanta, GA. Mar 5, 2004.

“Sympathy and Simulation.” Conference of the American Society of Aesthetics. Coral Gables, FL. Nov 2, 2002.

“Animation Aesthetics Before 1940.” Conference of the Society of Animation Studies. Burbank, CA. Sep 29, 2002.

“Revisiting Identification.” Conference of the Center for Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. Pecs, Hungary. May 21–24, 2001.

“Audition: Questioning Performance Through Video.” Stony Brook Interdisciplinary Conference, State University of New York at Stony Brook. March 20, 1999.

“Depicting Psychiatry in 1950s Comics.” Conference of the Society of Literature, Science, and the Arts. University of Florida, Gainesville. November 7, 1998.

“Identification in Comics.” Conference of the International Comics and Animation Festival. Washington, D. C. September 26, 1998.

“E.C.'s Psychoanalysis.” Comic Arts Conference. San Diego, CA. August 14, 1998.

“Therapy as Entertainment.” Institute of Liberal Studies Conference Science and Culture. Kentucky State University, Frankfort. April 2–4, 1998.

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Academic Awards and Grants

Lingnan University

Faculty of Arts grant for interactive media equipment, HKD $190,000 (USD $24,000)


University of Wisconsin–Madison

University Capstone Teaching Award (3 awards among 1,700 eligible teachers)


University Dissertator Fellowship (23 awards among 2,200 eligible dissertators)


American Society for Aesthetics travel award


University Vilas International Travel Award


Department McCarty Dissertation Award


Passed Prelims with Honors


Department Helen K. Herman Memorial Fund Scholarship


Department Vilas Continuing Research Award


University Graduate Student Council Travel Award


University Fellowship


Department McCarty Travel Awards (ten departmental awards from 2000–2006)


University of Florida

University Robert A. Bryan Presidential Fellowship


Amherst College

Phi Beta Kappa


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University and Professional Services

Lingnan University

Secretary, Department Board for the Department of Visual Studies

Sub-Committee on Language Enhancement

English Language Enhancement Programme and Curriculum Committee

Staff-Student Consultation Committee for Visual Studies BA

Speaker coordinator, Department of Visual Studies


Reviewer for MIT Press, Routledge, Projections: The Journal for Movies and Mind, Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, Games and Culture: A Journal of Interactive Media.

Editorial Board, Games and Culture: A Journal of Interactive Media. 2013-present.

Conference review board, Philosophy of Computer Games conferences, 2008–present.

Fellow, Society of Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. 2006–present.

Coordinator of Player Experience Special Interest Group, Digital Games Research Association, 2005–present.

Judge, Serious Games Showcase & Challenge at the Interservice/Industrial Training, Simulation and Education Conference. 2007–2014.

Website administrator, Society of Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image. 2006–2011.

Undergraduate Curriculum committee. University of Central Florida, Division of Digital Media. 2006–2007.

Research Fellow, Games and Professional Practice Simulations Group, Madison, WI. 2004–2006.

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