The Young and the Digital


Media Studies Program

Our Media Studies Program offers a critical approach to scholarship and pedagogy through the work of our faculty and students. We support the education of our graduate students through our PhD and MA degrees and our undergraduate students through BS degrees integrating production with studies. We produce valuable research contributing to academic and policy debates on key communication and media issues.

Media Studies addresses the central role of media in arts, culture, society, and politics, within our historical as well as local, regional, national and global contexts. We research and teach how media engage cultural practices, political participation, and social interactions within economic structures and technological systems.  We engage a wide range of broadcast and emerging media, including but not limited to film, television, radio, digital media, mobile communication, video, and interactive games. We explore media as sites for the articulation and struggle over identity, in terms of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, class, religion, and generation.  We value multiple theoretical and methodological approaches through the interdisciplinary study of texts, production, industry, policy, reception, and audiences.  Through media literacy based in empirical work, we aim to inspire better media practices as well as informed citizen engagement.

Media Studies Faculty

You can also see Media Studies Faculty organized by research areas and view all RTF faculty bios here.

Faculty Member

Research Interests

Teaching Focus

Mary Beltrán

Race, Ethnicity, and Entertainment Media

Latina/o Media Studies

Mixed Race and Media Culture

Critical and Cultural Studies

American Television and Film History

Celebrity Studies

Media Activism and Alternative Media

Race and Entertainment Media

Latina/os and U.S. Media

Critical and Cultural Studies of Mixed Race and Media

Race, Class, and Gender in American Television

Latina Feminisms, Art, and Media

Celebrity Studies

History of U.S. Television and Radio


Wenhong Chen

Globalization and Social Media

Media industries

Social capital and networks

New communication technologies & information society

Globalization and Social Media

Media Industries

Social Capital and Social Networks




Caroline Frick

Film and Broadcasting History

Media Preservation, Archives and Digital Libraries

Media Institutions and Organizational Theory


Film and Broadcasting History

Media Industries and National Cinemas



Kathy Fuller-Seeley

Film and Media History

Silent Film

Film Exhibition and Moviegoing History

Media Reception and Fandom

Star Studies

Gender and Social Class


Media Historiography

Film and Broadcasting History

Media Reception Studies

Comedy and Narrative


Lalitha Gopalan

Film Theory

Feminist Theory and Practices

Indian Cinema

Experimental Film and Video Practices

Genre Films

Art Cinema

World Cinema

Contemporary Asian Cinemas

Film Schools and Student Films

Film Style

Film Festivals

Contemporary Art


Genre Films

Screen Theory

Feminist Film Theory

Film Style

Asian Cinemas


Shanti Kumar

Global Media & Television

South Asian Media Studies

Cultural Studies

Global Media & Television

Media and Cultural Hybridity

Media Theory & Literature


Madhavi Mallapragada

Internet Cultures

Asian American Studies

Transnational, diaspora & immigrant studies

Critical race theory

Internet Cultures

Asian American Media Cultures

New Media Technologies

New Media Methods



Alisa Perren

Media Industries

Cultural Studies of Production

Distribution and Marketing Practices

Hollywood & New Technologies

Media Industries

Television Studies

History of US Radio and Television

Television Authorship

Post-Network Era TV


Charles Ramírez Berg

Film History & Criticism

Latino Images in Film

Mexican Cinema

Film History & Criticism

Latino Images

Alternative Poetics


Tom Schatz




Suzanne Scott



American film and television

Media Industries

Cultural studies & political economy


Fan Culture
Media Convergence
Gender and Geek Culture
Transmedia Storytelling
Comics Studies
Digital, Participatory, & Remix Culture


Narrative strategies

Film History and Criticism

Contemporary Hollywood


Digital Media and Culture
Fan Studies
Video Game Studies
Feminist Media Studies

Laura Stein

Communication Law and Policy

Alternative and Activist Media

Digital Media

Communication Law and Policy

Alternative media

Documentary Studies

Information & Communication Technologies


Joe Straubhaar

Global media and television

Digital inclusion

Latin America/ Brazil

Media Studies

Globalization & Migration

Global Media

Research Methods


Sharon Strover

History & culture of communication technologies

Digital media

Communication Law & Policy

Social Change and technology

Media Policy & Law

Technology and Culture

Information Society

Research Methods



Kathleen Tyner

Media Aesthetics
Experimental Media

Youth media production

Digital media

Media Literacy

Children & Media

Serious Games & Virtual worlds


Craig Watkins

Digital & social media

Youth culture

Race and ethnicity

Media theory and literature

Youth and media

Digital divide


Karin Gwinn Wilkins

Development & Social Change

Global Communication

Social Justice and Advocacy

Communication for Social Change

Media and the Middle East

Research Methods


[Emeritus] Janet Staiger

Production of Culture/culture of production in film and television including theories of authorship

Historical analysis of film practices, esp. the classical Hollywood cinema and genres

Reception Studies (including cultural and political issues involving gender, sexuality, and race/ethnicity)   

Critical analysis (including feminist/queer and poststructural approaches to media history)

Approaches to Authorship            

Feminist and Queer Film Theory      

Genre Theory         


Reception Studies

Representing Reality        

Sexualities and U.S. Cinema

Cult Movies and Gender Issues
Experimental Film and Video             

Gender and Sexuality Issues in the Media  Horror Film        

Media and U. S. Political Conflict

Screen Theory



Related Links


Communicating Gender and Advocating Accountability in Global Development
Karin Wilkins, professor, 2015

The Classical Mexican Cinema: The Poetics of the Exceptional Golden Age Films
Charles Ramírez Berg, professor, 2015
edited by Tom Schatz, professor

Networked China: Global Dynamics, Digital Media and Civic Engagement
Wenhong Chen, assistant professor, editor, 2015
co-edited with Stephen D. Reese

Virtual Homelands: Indian Immigrants and Online Cultures in the United States
Madhavi Mallapragada, assistant professor, 2014

Latin American Television Industries
Joseph Straubhaar, professor, 2013
co-authored with John Sinclair

Indie, Inc.: Miramax and the Transformation of Hollywood in the 1990s
Alisa Perren, associate professor, 2013

One Thousand Nights at the Movies: An Illustrated History of Motion Pictures, 1895-1915
Kathryn Fuller-Seeley, professor, 2013

Questioning Numbers: How to Read & Critique Research
Karin Wilkins, professor, 2011

Saving Cinema: The Politics of Preservation
Caroline Frick, assistant professor, 2011

Media Literacy: New Agendas in Communication
Kathleen Tyner, associate professor, 2010

Political Emotions: New Agendas in Communications
Janet Staiger, professor, 2010
co-edited with Ann Cvetkovich and Ann Reynolds

Chainsaws, Slackers and Spy Kids: Thirty Years of Filmmaking in Austin, Texas
Alison Macor, lecturer, 2010

Media Now: Understanding Media, Culture, and Technology
Joe Straubhaar, professor, 2010 update

The Young and the Digital: What the Migration to Social Network Sites, Games, and Anytime, Anywhere Media Means for Our Future
S. Craig Watkins, associate professor, 2009

Convergence Media History
Janet Staiger, professor, 2009
co-edited with Sabine Hake

Media Industries: History, Theory, and Method
Alisa Perren, associate professor, 2009
co-edited with Jennifer Holt

Latina/o Stars in U.S. Eyes:  The Making and Meanings of Film and TV Stardom
Mary Beltrán, associate professor, 2009

Mixed Race Hollywood
Mary Beltrán, associate professor, 2008

Hip Hop Matters: Politics, Popular Culture, and the Struggle for the Soul of a Movement
S. Craig Watkins, associate professor, 2005

Gandhi Meets Primetime: Globalization in Indian Television
Shanti Kumar, associate professor, 2005

Media Reception Studies
Janet Staiger, professor, 2005

Latino Images in Film: Stereotypes, Subversion, and Resistance
Charles Ramírez Berg, professor, 2002

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