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Academic studies of popular culture: The cases of Star Trek and Buffy The Vampire Slayer November 17, 2008

Posted by Raul in Uncategorized.

I am an academic. I’ve always admitted that my thinking is strongly influenced by my graduate school training. Thus, it’s not strange for me to become fascinated with scholarly studies of popular culture. Not fascinated enough to actually do yet another graduate degree (sorry, I completed a PhD, that’s more than enough for me, thanks). But still, it’s fun.

I was tweeting back and forth with a few of my friends about the upcoming Star Trek movie, and some of them indicated that the first trailer was bad and that they didn’t hold much hope for the actual movie. Doing a search of the Wikipedia entry for Star Trek: The Movie, I found out that the creators read PhD theses on the topic. Yes, there are people who have written their PhD thesis on Star Trek!

Living with Star Trek: American Culture and the Star Trek Universe by Lincoln Geraghty, PhD dissertation, University of Nottingham

Somebody else already did the research for me, so read their post for a list of PhD dissertations written on the topic of Star Trek.

Buffy, The Vampire Slayer, also spawned a whole academic journal (Slayage: The Online Journal of Buffy Studies), and a field of academic research: Buffy Studies. I-kid-you-not.

Sometimes, I wonder if I’d like to be THAT famous or THAT iconic. Can you imagine? Hummingbird: The Online Journal of Studies about Raul. Now THAT is being self-absorbed!



1. Karen - November 17, 2008

Joss Whedon has a degree in Women’s Studies. He knew what he was doing. 🙂

I wrote at least 2 undergraduate papers using Buffy as the text, both for Communication classes. I’ve also written at least 4 or 5 on blogging alone. Oh, the fun that is media/cultural studies. There’s been at least 2 volumes published on the Philosophy of Battlestar Galactica as well that I’ve wanted to read.

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