The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

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The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.



tellers lab

The Storytellers Lab is comprised of scholars, community members and leaders, students and friends who use interpretative and arts-based qualitative methods to shed light on identity, culture, and society through diverse perspectives and stories.

These stories are shared through various methods in order to impact our local, cultural, and regional knowledge.

Meet the founder & director

Asha S. Winfield, Ph.D., is an assistant professor at LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication. Winfield is a critical/cultural media scholar with a focus on the stories (creation, rituals and practices) of Black individuals and groups occurring in the media, culture and society. As a researcher and filmmaker, she aims to use intersectionality, counternarratives, and Black feminist thought to frame and center the experiences of Black people as they relate to audience reception through meaning-making and identity-making.

Winfield’s research seeks to investigate and make space for diverse Black stories inside and around the media and community. Her work has been published in Health Communication, Women’s Studies in Communication, several book chapters and digital research forums like InMedia Res. Her documentary,Black Experiences with COVID-19, Media, Mourning & Faith, is set to be released in 2022. Additionally, her documentary on Black women barbers inside of Black historical barbershops is still in development.

Winfield is a 2012 graduate of Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, and a 2015 graduate of the University of Houston in Houston, Texas. She earned a Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in 2021. Her dissertation, "I Don't See Myself": Exploring Reception To Hollywood’s Construction Of Memory Through Black Women’s Biopics, explores Black women’s silhouetted representation in Hollywood’s version of history and frames new concepts like “intersectional call and response” and the “Black living room pedagogy” where learning Black history is shaped by Black memories and storytellers.

Winfield is also the founder and director of the forthcoming research group The Storyteller’s Lab at LSU. This group of academic storytellers utilizes qualitative research (community-based, participatory, photovoice and video voice research) in concert with documentary filmmakers to share the cultural and historical narratives of everyday people in different contexts.

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The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew

The mission of the TSL is to amplify voices of the storytellers in the academy and community. By centering the voices of scholars who have historically been underrepresentated, minoritized, and marginalized by dominant culture, we create a beautiful and needful resistance using our lived experiences through film and research.

Those experiences become our curriculum by which we better understand our global identities and diverse world.


The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew

Meet thE teAm

The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew




Tiffany R. Smith is a doctoral student in Media and Public Affairs at Manship School of Mass Communication. Her research interests are intersectionality, race, gender and sexuality, media representation, and the African diaspora. Before attending LSU, Tiffany was a higher education professional focusing on diversity, equity, and inclusion. She received her B.A. in communication at Bowling Green State University and M.A. in Global Communication at Kennesaw State University.

Beyond her social justice activism within academia, she has worked for Amnesty International, The Walter Rodney Foundation, Atlanta Jobs with Justice, and is a trainer of Nonviolence365 at the King Center in Atlanta, GA. She is a Founding Member at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights.

Tiffany R. Smith

The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

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Joshua is working on a PhD in Media & Public Affairs in the Manship School of Mass Communication at LSU. He is primarily interested in the intersection of political communication and science skepticism, with a specific interest in COVID-19—how we view it and the intersectional vulnerabilities and racial disparities associated with it. Aspiring to be a mixed methods scholar, the lens through which he conducts his research is critical theory and intersectionality. Originally from Texas, where he went to community college and then university, Joshua went on to receive an M.A. in mass communication from the

University of Minnesota.

joshua jordan

Who is TSL for?

for us!

For Storytellers,

story makers, and

academic creatives.

This collaborative works to visualize new and old

narratives through visual storytelling and arts-based methods.

we are currently accepting application from lsu students.

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Current Documentary Projects

Extended trailer

Documentary by Asha Winfield

testifying and telling stories cut 2021

Black Experiences

With COVID-19




Documentary by Asha S. Winfield

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preview - our black covid stories

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The Communicating Diversity Conference is hosted by the Climate and Inclusion Committee of the

Department of Communication at Texas A&M University.

Film Screening + Q&A:

Testifyin' & Telling Stories Saves Black Lives:

Using Storytelling for COVID-19 Information

Saturday, May 22, 2021 | 11:45 AM to 12:45 PM CST

Dr. Benika Dixon

Asha S. Winfield

Dr. Ashley Hill

Chante Anderson

This film screening is a part of a larger documentary:

Black Experiences with COVID-19, Media, Mourning & Faith

This current project discusses storytelling from the Black community surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic from May 2020 - May 2021. When the pandemic began, researchers observed Black communities across the nation using media, community groups, and faith-based organizations to share and amplify their unique experiences. This film screening shares some of their stories and the researchers' opinions on how storytelling promotes health messages in certain communities.

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The documentary is sponsored by Glasscock Center for Humanities Research and the Department of Communication at Texas A&M University.

This year’s conference is sponsored by the Texas A&M University Department of Communication, Melbern G. Glasscock Center for Humanities Research, Department of Sociology, Women’s and Gender Studies program, and Latino/a and Mexican American Studies program.

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What kind of stories matter?

Oral histories, life stories, neighborhood folklore, and cultural stories are all a part of our knowledge production. Through visual storytelling and research, this lab centers the experiences of our communities.

From non-fiction to fictional stories based on reality and real events, this is our space to show whole and complete.

The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew

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"Your story


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The storytellers lab on film

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The storytellers lab - 2021 Promo

The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew

What we do: Events

  • Yearly documentary project under the direction of Dr. Winfield
      • Film Screenings
        • Existing Project - Black COVID-19 Stories
  • Annual Short Film Festival + Collaborative (Fall 2022)
  • Telling Black Stories Event- Every Semester
    • Inviting Guest Speakers from community and school

What we do: Hands on Learning

  • Guest speakers from local creatives
  • Workshops with creatives in the field
  • Partnership with Reilly Center for Media and Public Affairs
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The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew

What we do:

empowering community voices

Capturing community stories on film to bring history and memory to the forefront for learning and advocacy

    • Baton Rouge
    • Louisiana
    • The South
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Join the Crew!

there is space for the creative in you

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Are you a student at Louisiana State University?

We are looking for creatives, directors, filming crew, writers, and other volunteers looking to learn more about community & cultural storytelling. #BigStorytellers

Dr. Asha S. Winfield

Director of TSL

Tiffany R. Smith

Graduate Assistant

The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew

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" a place where the stories go"

The Storytellers


inaugural short Film


for more information

The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew

Submission Topics

  • Documentary
  • News Stories
  • Fictional Visual Storytelling

  • Black Stories Matter
  • Women, Gender & Sexuality
  • Culture & Identity Speaks
  • Local & Strong
  • Unsung Heros
  • Health Narratives
    • COVID-19 Stories
    • Public Health Issues
    • Environmental Issues

Submission Rules

  • Short Film Submission Only - (15 min limit)
  • No more than 5 submissions person/group
  • LSU affiliation (student, faculty, staff, alumni)
  • Community Affiliate (BR resident; LA resident)
  • Created between January 1, 2020 - December 31, 2022
  • Uploaded to YouTube as a Unlisted Video
  • Deadline to Submit is TBA
  • Must include one or more of the topics for the Film Festival
  • No submission fee is required

The Storytellers Lab

A place where the stories go.

join the crew

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More coming soon

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