Barbara Friedman is a scholar and teacher whose work emphasizes constructions and contestations of gender, race and class in historical and contemporary mass media. Her current research focuses on media and sexual violence. 
She is co-director with her colleague Anne Johnston of The Irina Project (TIP), which monitors media representations of sex trafficking and advocates for the responsible and accurate reporting of the issue. For their work, Friedman and Johnston were named Thorp Faculty Engaged Scholars, and received the Donna Allen Award for Feminist Advocacy in 2014. Friedman was honored with the David Brinkley Teaching Excellence Award in 2014.
Friedman’s research has been published in Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, Feminist Media Studies, Journal of Human Trafficking, Journalism History, and American Journalism, among other journals.
She is a past editor of American Journalism, the peer-reviewed quarterly journal of the American Journalism Historians Association. Friedman directs NewStories, an oral history project documenting the lives of North Carolina news workers and newsmakers. She is a faculty affiliate of the Southern Oral History Program at UNC. 
Friedman, who joined the school in 2004, is the author of "From the Battlefront to the Bridal Suite: U.S. and British Mass Media Coverage of British War Brides 1942-1946" (University of Missouri Press, 2007). She also is the author of "Web Search Savvy: Strategies and Shortcuts for Online Research" (Lawrence Erlbaum, 2004), reflecting her professional background as a reporter and editor.


  • Ph.D., University of Missouri-Columbia
  • M.A., University of Missouri-Columbia
  • B.A., Webster University