Tag Article List: pop culture

Will the Odds Ever Be in Her Favor? Katniss Everdeen and the Female Athlete

Tony Kemerly
High Point University
High Point, North Carolina, USA


Autoethnography is a qualitative research method that allows the author to write in a highly personalized style, drawing on his or her experience to extend understanding about a specific issue. One subset of autoethnography, critical autoethnography, combines the narrative or storytelling aspect of autoethnography with critical theory approaches in order to gain illustrate for the reader a specific site of oppression within one’s culture. Through an examination of the books and films of The Hunger Games’ saga, this paper will examine the interaction between students and professor in regard to the journey of the female athlete through the power dynamic prevalent in the social milieu of sport culture today. For both Katniss and the female athlete, a specific gender representation has been accepted by society and assigned to women; thus, placing constraints on her and her actions by controlling her representation. It is this attempt at control over the female athlete that is the focus of this critical autoethnography. Institutionalized patriarchal practices such as these are faced by Katniss and the female athlete within Panem and the world of sport, respectively. These metaphorically similar norms and rituals reinforce the notion of a perceived superiority of the male athlete through adherence to socially constructed and strictly enforced gender norms that are the site of a constant battle faced by the female athlete today. 

Keywords: women’s sports, pop culture, power, gender, autoethnography, student experience

Author bio:

Tony Kemerly received his PhD in Exercise Science at The University of Mississippi and is a Professor of Exercise Science at High Point University. A shift in focus and an MA in Communication Studies from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro has allowed for a transition to the cultural studies aspects of Kinesiology. Kemerly teaches courses such as Body and Identity, Locating the Self Through the Whedonverse, Visual Semiotics in Popular Culture, Death: Seeing Beyond the Veil, American Language and Power, and Phenomenology of the Body.

Suggested Citation


Kemerly, T. (2022). Will the odds ever be in her favor? Katniss Everdeen and the female athlete. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy, 9(3). http://journaldialogue.org/issues/v9-issue-3/will-the-odds-ever-be-in-her-favor-katniss-everdeen-and-the-female-athlete/


Kemerly, Tony. “Will the Odds Ever Be in Her Favor? Katniss Everdeen and the Female Athlete.” Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy, vol. 9, no. 3, 2022, http://journaldialogue.org/issues/v9-issue-3/will-the-odds-ever-be-in-her-favor-katniss-everdeen-and-the-female-athlete/

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Media Literacy, Education, and a Global Pandemic: Lessons Learned in a Gender and Pop Culture Classroom

Jessica Lowell Mason
University at Buffalo
Buffalo, New York, USA

Ebehitale Imobhio
University at Buffalo
Buffalo, New York, USA


In Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom, bell hooks writes that “to engage in dialogue is one of the simplest ways we can begin as teachers, scholars, and critical thinkers to cross boundaries.” Hence, this paper explores, through narrative dialogue, teacher and student perspectives on the pedagogical impact of the global pandemic on the process of engaging with and learning about media literacy. By naming and narrating teacher and student experiences and perspectives from a course on gender and pop culture that took place during the Spring 2020 semester, the paper aims to demonstrate the way that crisis can both expose certain pedagogical issues as well as generate pedagogical opportunities. It narrates and reflects on the ways in which moments of crisis create opportunities for educators to think differently and more expansively about pedagogy by demonstrating its occurrence in one course, and how the combination of factors specific to the crisis required both the instructor and their students to re-situate themselves in relation to the course content. Through a teacher-student meditation, the paper argues that media literacy is a subject that leads to increased pedagogical deliberation and experimentation in the study of pop culture. It suggests that the experiences described might provide wisdom for further pedagogical development on the subject of media literacy, more broadly, positioning and inviting educators and students to engage in dialogue in order to shift paradigms according to the moment of crisis at hand. The broader aim of the article is to encourage educators to follow the example of the students in the gender and pop culture course who felt empowered to create innovative and social-justice-focused media literacy projects as a way of exercising agency, and of confronting and dealing with the harsh realities of global circumstances. 

Keywords: Media literacy, media, pedagogy, pop culture, pandemic, education, gender, gender studies, gender and pop culture

Author Bios

Jessica Lowell Mason, Lecturer at Buffalo State College and Doctoral Candidate in Global Gender and Sexuality Studies at the University at Buffalo, is serving as Editor and Accessibility Fellow with the Northeast Modern Language Association. During the 2020-2021 year, she was a graduate fellow with the College Consortium and the Coalition for Community Writing’s Herstory Training Institute and Fellowship Program, Teaching Memoir for Justice and Peace, a year-long program in partnership with the Humanities Institute at Stony Brook University. Some of Mason’s poems, articles, and reviews have been published by Sinister Wisdom, Lambda Literary, Gender Focus, The Comstock Review, IthacaLit, The Feminist Wire, SUNY Buffalo’s Romance Studies Journal, and Praeger. Her research, pedagogical, and literary interests and practices center, broadly, on identity and language, but more specifically on representations and constructions of madness within archival documents as they strive to assert identity and self-fashioning under systems of oppression that seek to silence and erase them. She is also the co-founder of Madwomen in the Attic, a feminist mental health literacy and advocacy organization in western New York.

Ebehitale Imobhio is currently completing her masters degree in Community Health and Health Behavior in the School of Public Health and Health Professions at the University at Buffalo. She is currently a member of the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Council and the co-founder of the Envision Mentoring Program for undergraduate students of color in the program. She is passionate about bridging the gap between academia and communities through the use of accessible language.

Suggested Reference


Lowell Mason, J. &  Imobhio E. (2021). Media literacy, education, and a global pandemic: lessons learned in a gender and pop culture classroom. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy, 8(3). http://journaldialogue.org/issues/v8-issue-3/media-literacy-education-and-a-global-pandemic-lessons-learned-in-a-gender-and-pop-culture-classroom/


Lowell Mason, Jessica, and Imobhio, Ebehitale. “Media Literacy, Education, and a Global Pandemic: Lessons Learned in a Gender and Pop Culture Classroom.” Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy, vol. 8, no. 3, 2021, http://journaldialogue.org/issues/v8-issue-3/media-literacy-education-and-a-global-pandemic-lessons-learned-in-a-gender-and-pop-culture-classroom/

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Triple Threat or Triple Opportunity: When a Pop Culture Course Goes Online at a Community College

Lance Eaton
North Shore Community College
Lynn, Massachusetts, USA

Alex Rockey
California State University, Bakersfield
Bakersfield, California, USA


Teaching popular culture comes with many opportunities and challenges in a traditional classroom, but equally interesting and valuable are the possibilities that teaching such a course online can provide. This article explores how “Popular Culture in the US,” an online course at a community college, embraces some key attributes of the digital world such as multimodal communication and Web 2.0 interactivity. Evolved from a face-to-face community college course, the online version has increasingly developed to move from an instructor-centered to a student-centered approach that relies upon various engagement strategies. By using student choice, OER-enabled pedagogy, and constructivist approaches, the instructor engages students by leveraging the Internet to educate students, empower them as creators of content, and support critical participation in popular culture. The article illustrates how teaching within the online space can enhance teaching and learning, particularly for courses that have a disciplinary focus on popular culture and media.

Keywords: pop culture, online course, constructivism, community college, universal design for learning, open pedagogy, open educational resources, interaction, multimodal

Author Bios

Lance Eaton has been teaching at North Shore Community College for over 15 years. He has Master Degrees in American Studies, Public Administration, and Instructional Design. He is currently a PhD candidate at UMASS Boston in the Higher Education program and his dissertation focuses on how scholars engage in academic piracy. He is also the Educational Programs Manager at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University and a part-time instructor at Southern New Hampshire University. He has given talks, written about, and presented at conferences on open pedagogy, hybrid flexible learning, and digital service learning. His musings, reflections, and ramblings can be found on his blog: http://www.ByAnyOtherNerd.com.

Alex Rockey, PhD, is an instructional design consultant for the teacher education department at California State University, Bakersfield. Alex also will teach and supervise emerging educators at CSU-Bakersfield in the fall. She has experience both as a teacher in K-16 contexts and as an instructional designer. Her research focuses on the ecology of feedback in online courses that considers instructor and student perceptions as well as the impact of mediating technologies. She curates her work on online education on her website: https://alexrockey.com/.

Suggested Citation 


Eaton, L. & Rockey, A. (2020). Triple threat or triple opportunity: When a pop culture course goes online at a community college. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy, 7(2). http://journaldialogue.org/v7-issue-2/triple-threat-or-triple-opportunity-when-a-pop-culture-course-goes-online-at-a-community-college.


Eaton, Lance and Alex Rockey. Triple Threat or Triple Opportunity: When a Pop Culture Course Goes Online at a Community College. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy, vol. 7, no. 2, 2020. http://journaldialogue.org/v7-issue-2/triple-threat-or-triple-opportunity-when-a-pop-culture-course-goes-online-at-a-community-college.

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