RESEARCH AND METHODOLOGICAL
|Feminist Media Studies||Critical Computational||Digital Media & Cultures|
|Supremacism & Extremism||Far-Right Politics||Mis/Disinformation & Conspiracism|
|Visual Communication||De-colonialism & Indigenous Studies||Mixed-Methods & Cross-Disciplinary Projects|
In Brief (Full Statement Available Upon Request)
My interdisciplinary research is rooted in feminist media studies and attends to: (a) the ways in which actors and groups communicate and share information to construct cultures and publics; (b) how socio-technical systems and tactical engagement with media content are used by illiberal actors to spread alternative belief systems and identity propaganda that disproportionately harms already marginalized people; (c) how journalism and the media can either diminish or promote equitable access to information and engaged democracy by reflecting and reinforcing, in the first instance, or pushing back against, in the second, structural oppressions; and, (d) what can be done about it. While I am methodologically agnostic, my work leans toward critical computational methods— a combination of quantitative computational and qualitative techniques conducted with normative commitments toward engaged democracy and equity— to explore and critique male and white supremacy, far-right politics and extremisms, including the mis/disinformation and conspiracism circulated by these groups across platforms and channels.
This research so far has resulted in five refereed journal articles, five peer-reviewed chapters in edited volumes, and a handful of smaller publications. I currently have six co-authored articles under various stages of journal review, one additional chapter in a peer-reviewed volume under contract and forthcoming, and a number of single and co-authored works in progress. Three of these single-authored studies stem from my dissertation research, which explored media coverage and online activity of a community of men— incels (short for involuntary celibates)— surrounding an inability to find sexual partners. These studies include: a hyperlink network analysis to map incel geographies online and their connections with other supremacist and extremist groups; a computational analysis (topic modeling, network analysis and community detection) to identify discursive frames used by incels on the largest online incel forum; and, a computational framing analysis of incels in U.S. news media coverage. Taken together, these studies shed light on the discourse by and around the movement, its social network structure, and its deployment of masculinity and racialized/gendered discourses for political ends.
My future research agenda reflects my normative commitments and aims to answer the four-part questions outlined above via mixed-methods projects. First, I will continue mining the big data corpus from my dissertation, as well as other datasets in my possession. Second, I intend to work on securing a grant to conduct a large-scale, two-part survey exploring the pervasiveness of male and white supremacist ideologies in North America. Third, I plan to map the impact of men’s rights activism on public policy using data collected from the major men’s rights associations— which are disproportionately white and, thus, often do material harms to both women and people of color— and proposed/approved legislation. I envision this as a long-term, comparative project. Fourth, a European colleague and I have already begun discussions to recruit other international scholars to work on a collaborative project that will use the blueprint from the media representation chapter of my dissertation to conduct a comparative examination of incel news coverage around the world and across cultures.
You can see a full list of publications here and conference presentations here. If you'd like my full research statement, which includes additional details and projects, please drop me a line on the Contact page.