Research

My work generally deals with media and cultural studies and my research and teaching interests lie in communication and cultural theory, critical media studies, and social and political theory.

My interdisciplinary research addresses questions about the intersection of media, ideology, and subjectivity, and examines the role of media and popular culture in reproducing ideological hegemony and in producing subjects compliant in the dominance of capitalism and neoliberalism. My research contributes to debates on media and culture; ideologies of postmodern and consumer culture; subjectivity and identity; and emancipatory politics.

My current research approaches digital and popular culture in two interrelated ways. My current primary research involves looking at the relationship between social media and neoliberal ideology — especially rhetoric about entrepreneurialism and discourses of the “self,” publicity, privacy, and democracy. I am investigating the role that neoliberal discourses and rhetorics play in informing the design decisions of social media platforms and algorithms, and how platform logics are geared towards both enhancing user participation and interpellating users as neoliberal subjects; and, how these processes, at a formal level – that is, the format and design of the platform, as opposed to its content, which is largely user-generated – themselves, represent and endorse rhetorics and ideologies of neoliberalism.

Relatedly, I also write about the representation of digital culture, ideology, and rhetoric in contemporary popular culture, particularly in film and television. To that end, I am interested in some of the ways that popular entertainment media address changes to the culture of the digital, what they have to say about our lives and conflicts in 21st century capitalism, and the extent to which they either reinforce or speculate about changes and improvements to the existing society in the face of inherent contradictions in the existing relations of power and exploitation.

A third line of inquiry in my current research involves exploring the rhetoric, discourses, and ideology of extreme rightwing movements, sometimes referred to as the alt-Right. My research on social media looks at ways that platform logics intersect with variations of the neoliberal ideology and how this helps to exacerbate the popularization of populist rightwing discourse, particularly in the context of the post-2008 financial crisis and the rise of “Trumpism.”

My peer-reviewed research on these topics has been published in journals such as Theory & EventCultural PoliticsSouth Atlantic Quarterly, Cinema JournalMediationsCiNéMASTOPIA: Canadian Journal of Cultural StudiesPUBLICSubjectivity, and the Canadian Journal of Film Studies.

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