Article List by Author

What Hot Criminals, Anti-Heroes, and Bob Dylan Can Teach Us

Kate Lane
Northwestern Oklahoma State University
Alva, OK

Roxie James
Northwestern Oklahoma State University
Alva, OK


Author Bios

Kathryn E. Lane, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of English and Department Chairperson at Northwestern Oklahoma State University. Her research interests include Victorian literature and culture, popular culture, and feminist theory. She is also the editor of the 2018 book collection Age of the Geek: Depictions of Nerds and Geeks in Popular Media. 

Roxie J. James, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of English in the Department of English at Northwestern Oklahoma State University. She specializes in Romantic and Victorian literature, and her research interests include British women’s writing and depictions of dirt in Victorian literature and culture.


Suggested Citation

Lane, K. E. & James, R. (2019). What hot criminals, anti-heroes, and Bob Dylan can teach us. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy. 6(2),

Lane, Kathryn E. & Roxie J. James. “What Hot Criminals, Anti-Heroes, and Bob Dylan Can Teach Us.”  Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy, vol. 6, no. 2, 2019,

Download as PDF

Review of Ghettos, Tramps, and Welfare Queens

Debbie Olson, PhD
Missouri Valley College
Marshall, MO 

Book Review: Pimpare, Stephen. Ghettos, Tramps, and Welfare Queens: Down and Out on the Silver Screen. Oxford University Press, 2017. 376 pgs., $34.95.

Stephen Pimpare’s Ghettos, Tramps, and Welfare Queens is a unique jaunt through Hollywood films that feature society’s most marginalized and maligned, the homeless and the poor. Pimpare, PhD, is a senior Lecturer in American politics and public policy at the University of New Hampshire and has authored two previous books on poverty and political policy. And while Pimpare carefully acknowledges he is not a film scholar, his insightful examination of the way film (re)presents the poor and homeless is a valuable addition to both political science and cinema scholarship. Overall, Ghettos, Tramps, and Welfare Queens is a perceptive look at the intersections of popular imagery and public policy. Continue Reading →

Making Your Teaching a Little Sweeter: Pedagogical Implications of Nailed It!

Richard L. Mehrenberg, PhD
Millersville University
Millersville, Pennsylvania, USA

Inspiration sometimes comes from the unlikeliest of places. Educators often look to traditional resources such as in-services, graduate classes, and professional journals to improve their pedagogy. However, sometimes great teaching ideas can be found embedded in popular culture. One such example of a T.V. show that has three strong take-aways for teachers is the Netflix Original Series, Nailed It! Continue Reading →

Human Sacrifice and Propaganda in Popular Media: More Than Morbid Curiosity

Jason Tatlock
Georgia Southern University, Armstrong Campus
Savannah, Georgia, USA


Representations of human sacrifice, whether based upon real or fictitious events, powerfully demonstrate societal norms and fascinations related to the acceptability of slaying humans for religious or national interests, particularly given the divisive and bloody nature of the topic. Readers of eye-witness accounts, newspaper reports, and historical narratives, and viewers of cinematic productions, war posters, and political cartoons come face to face with the beliefs and agendas of the creators of popular media. Such sources represent the slaying of victims in sacred rituals, as individuals attempt to demarcate societal boundaries along the etic/emic spectrum, be they commentaries on their own cultures or on contemporary foreigners. Those who write about or portray human sacrifice have, in several instances, done so with propagandistic aims related to ethnocentrism, imperialism, and a perceived religious superiority that transfer the topic beyond the realm of mere morbid curiosity to justify forms of dominance like territorial conquest, militarism, and slavery. Moving from the ancient world to contemporary cinema, this study demonstrates both the antiquity of such propagandistic goals and their relevancy to recent portrayals of human sacrifice in film. While Apocalypto (2007) and The Wicker Man (1973) align closely with the historical examples presented, especially in relation to the issue of a perceived Christian ascendancy, The Purge (2013) largely diverges from them. The Purge counters a dominant American ideal that sacrifice for the state is valuable and accentuates the need to protect ethnic minorities from oppression. 

Keywords: human sacrifice, ethnocentrism, imperialism, religious superiority, propaganda, sati, India, West Africa, Rome, Meso-America, United States, Apocalypto, The Wicker Man, and The Purge

Author Bio

Jason Tatlock (PhD, University of Michigan) is Associate Professor of History at Georgia Southern University, Armstrong Campus. He specializes in the study of religious violence, the Abrahamic Faith traditions, the ancient Near East, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Reference Citation:

Tatlock, J. (2019). Human sacrifice and propaganda in popular media: More than morbid curiosity. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy, 6(1)


Tatlock, Jason. Human Sacrifice and Propaganda in Popular Media: More Than Morbid Curiosity. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy. 2019, vol 6, no. 1

Download as PDF