Genre Mashing in Professional Wrestling

After the event of this weekend, where normally we are only needing to remember our veterans but must now also remember those young men and women who died at the whim of a terrorist — of a misogynist extremist — I need to take a break from discussing fractured fandom and the sexist, and misogynist,…

The Selling of Scientology

Blink and you missed it, it seems. For this past Super Bowl XLVIII, the commercials, as always, were a draw and a source of conversation and controversy.  And while everyone is talking about Coca-Cola’s “It’s Beautiful” ad, and the right-wing reaction against it, a different ad caught my eye. Here we have another attempt by The…

Doctor Who Theme Week @ In Media Res

Chris Olson and I kick off the In Media Res theme week to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who.  This piece, with a wonderful video produced by Chris, is based on the conference paper we recently presented at MPCA. You can see the post and the video via “I AM the Doctor”: Polysemic rhetoric and…

Fantasy, Fairy Tales, and Female Sexuality in Spirited Away, Pan’s Labyrinth, and Coraline

Christopher J. Olson presents his MPCA 2013 Conference talk on the portrayals of girls exploring their emergent sexuality in the coming-of-age stories Spirited Away, Pan’s Labyrinth, and Coraline.  The films’ depictions of the girls’ experiences present positive representations for girls to embrace their agency, their sexuality, and their identity. via Fantasy, Fairy Tales, and Female Sexuality…

The Multiplicity of Virtual Worlds

Our definitions and metaphors: Discussion of how researchers and designers as users make sense of virtual world technologies This short essay reflects a project that occurred before, during and after an international workshop hosted by the Virtual Worlds Research Project.  The goal was to complete a dialogue to help us understand the multiplicity of terms…

Analyzing Obama’s 2013 SOTUS

Back after the election was determined, I used the tag cloud generator Wordle.net to analyze Barack Obama’s acceptance speech.  Just to follow-up, I decided that the same type of analysis would be usefully applied to Obama’s most recent big speech: his 2013 State of the Union Speech (SOTUS, as we now say in this Twitter,…

Analyzing Obama’s 2012 Victory Speech

In the early hours of November 7th, 2012, Barack Obama took the stage at the McCormick Center in Chicago to give his re-election victory speech after Republican challenger Mitt Romney had conceded the defeat of Ohio, and as Ohio went, so went the nation.  In about 20 minutes, Obama thanked his family, his friends, his…

Variations on Theme: Boudu, Toni, and Mother Nature

[Film analysis paper from 1999] In ancient times, many cultures conceived of the world as a snake devouring itself, creating a continuous circle.  In modern times, film critic Andre Bazin had a similar conception.  He believed everything in reality was connected to everything else. The world, reality, is continuous, circular.  Before the rules of chaos…

The Rise of Hentai in America, Part 3

[This is the final part of the women studies paper I wrote on hentai.  You can find Part 1, on the definition of hentai, here, and Part 2, on the comparison of hentai to live action pornography, here.] While it may not be as prevalent or have the same tradition in our society that live…

The Rise of Hentai in America, Part 2

[In part 1 of this 2006 women studies paper, I discussed what hentai is and how it has grown in consumption in the United States; so if you are first entering this report via this part, you should pop on over there first.  In this part of the report, I compare hentai to live action…