Me too*

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Two words: Harvey. Weinstein. The media is awash right now with Hollywood types of all ilks rushing to distance themselves from the mogul turned sexual predator. Hillary Clinton has expressed her ‘shock’ at the behaviour of her former friend and James Corden has rightly received a good dressing down for making jokes about the serious allegations which have began to emerge.

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CGWS Summer School Notes – Trans* Bowie, Trans* Prince – Prof. Jack Halberstam

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Image by Anne Graefer

I have to admit that the Cultural Studies nerd in me was more than a little excited to see Jack Halberstam give the keynote speech for the CGWS Summer School in Lancaster on Monday. As I arrived at the venue and was the first to take my seat in the auditorium I was positively giddy and am happy to report that I was not disappointed!  Continue reading

CGWS Summer School Notes – Amy Winehouse and the mediated politics of disgust – Dr. Debra Ferreday

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Google Search Result for ‘Abject Definition’

Last night’s screening of ‘Amy’ was followed this morning with an interesting lecture from Dr.Ferreday on the politics of disgust. I was particularly moved by her discussion of Amy as an ‘abject’ figure which prompted me to search for the above dictionary definition – ‘completely without pride or dignity’ which seemed a fitting way to describe how Winehouse has often been depicted. Ferreday also notes the links with bodily disgust, blood, sweat, pus etc. Interesting too to think about the tabloid celebrity press’ use of the ‘red circle’ – usually for highlighting the bodily transgression of cellulite was used to highlight the embodiments of Amy’s mental illness. Continue reading

CGWS Summer School Notes – Celebrity Provocations Miley and Rihanna – Dr. Debra Ferreday and Dr Kate McNicholas Smith

Another really interesting session today. Both thought provoking explorations of the disruptive potential of artists such as Mile and Rihanna and uselful to think not just about representations, but interpretations and readings of these representations and how they re(produce) modes of oppression and even violence. My key thoughts arising from both of these excellent papers were- Continue reading

Not a Foregone Conclusion- Coming Clean a Supervisor Meeting

I’ve been in a PhD funk for a while now. I had thought it was an inevitable symptom of my ongoing mental health problems re-surfacing, but the more I thought about my thesis the more uninspired I felt. Having been working on this PhD since 2011 (and with an expected completion date of 2020), I was beginning to feel as though the moment of my research had passed me by. Talking about Raunch Culture and hypersexualisation seems so passé, as though the conversation has moved on and the paradigm shifted. Already my own opinions on the matter have changed drastically. From being naively critical of lapdancing clubs and pole fitness classes I have reached a stage where I view the whole field of my research in a more nuanced (and thankfully more sex positive) way. My criticism now is not with any particular depiction of ‘sexy’ (or the people in those depictions) but on how few variations are present in those depictions. Continue reading