Squirrel Girl and Feminism

I created this video for DePaul’s Pop Culture Conference in 2021 on superheroes. For the first time, it was an entirely online conference with asynchronous, video presentations for academic work. The ideas in this piece come from a chapter I wrote for an anthology being produced by Bryan Carr and Meta G. Carstarphen. That chapter…

Frasier and the New Man

For the fifty-eighth episode of The Pop Culture Lens podcast, Christopher Olson and CarrieLynn Reinhard are joined by friend of the podcast Kadee Whaley to discuss the classic 1990s sitcom, Frasier. In this episode, they discuss the different representations of masculinity contained seen in the series, from the New Man of the ’90s to the American…

Episode 59: Barbie

In a first, the fifty-ninth episode of The Pop Culture Lens podcast finds friend of the podcast Noelle Lynn Blood joining Christopher Olson and I to discuss the legacy of the famous fashion doll, Barbie. The episode comes out of Noelle’s interest, as a scholar and a fan, in the Mattel creation. The discussion focuses…

Meet the PWSJ and PCSJ

The Professional Wrestling Studies Association announces the first issue of the Professional Wrestling Studies Journal from editor Matt Foy. This online, open access journal can be reached at https://www.prowrestlingstudies.org/professional-wrestling-studies-journal. The first issue contains scholarly essays and reviews from different disciplines, all considering various aspects of professional wrestling. Issues include how professional wrestling relates to the…

Der Dibuk: An Early Judaic Take on Exorcism

Now it is time to watch one of the first exorcism movies, and one of the few Polish/Yiddish movies: Der Dibuk (1937). This is one of the few Yiddish language movies to come out of Poland, and it is based on a famous Polish play. Opening prolouge talking about the dybbuk, about how all spirits,…

Backwards and in High Heels

In the forty-second episode of The Pop Culture Lens podcast, Christopher Olson and I discuss the on-screen dancing duo Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. In this episode, the co-hosts analyze the star personas of the classic duo for how they represent issues regarding gender and power dynamics. They interrogate the now famous saying that Rogers…

Updating Exorcism Cinema List

A year ago, Christopher Olson and I published a book on the representation of exorcisms in cinema. Possessed Women, Haunted States: Cultural Tensions in Exorcism Cinema (November 2016) was a comprehensive analysis of films across time and culture for the common themes surrounding who was the possessed and who was the exorcist. This analysis concluded…

Gendering Hatsune Miku

Christopher Olson (Seems Obvious to Me) and I have been working on our concept of the networked gender, building off the concept of the networked self to understand the co-constructive nature of gender identity. We will be publishing a piece on using this concept to look at BMO in Adventure Time, and this represents our…

Gendering Robots: A Class Discussion

The next research project I hope to work on looks at how people make sense of robots. I am particularly interested in how people apply gendered assumptions and attributions to robots or artificial agents, and how apply those assumptions then impact how people engage with robots. In a sense, robots have become another medium as…

Exorcism Cinema Book Published

Here it is! The Tensions in Exorcism Cinema project began in 2013, when my partner Christopher J. Olson (Seems Obvious to Me) and I watched the film The Possession¬†and noted how common it seemed for women to be the victim of possession who needed to be saved through exorcism. We wondered, is that true of…