Our digital culture focus is seen in our Journal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds, our contribution to the university-wide Digital Economies cluster, and by the wider research interests of staff into areas such as computer gaming; virtual worlds; digital fiction; digital advertising; and surveillance and sousveillance (watching from below) in web-based participatory media (Web 2.0). Many real-world issues are grappled with here, such as: What does analysis of computer game discourse tell us about language ideologies in new media? How are people trying to manipulate the digital environment for political and commercial gain? What are the core features of the digital advertising environment? How can literature be taught in such a way as to make it relevant for an increasingly hypermedia-oriented readership? How are disruptive technologies changing methods of creative production? How is the new, ubiquitous nature of computing changing our relationship to the physical world? How are global media being absorbed into local cultures? What are the implications of corporeality in digital text reception?
> Visit our Digital Culture projects page .
Political Communication and Cultural Politics
Our focus on political communication and cultural politics is seen in our staff’s engagement with issues of manipulation of information, identity and discourse for political and/or ideological gain in media forms such as Web 2.0, news forms, magazines and cinema. We ask questions like: What is the impact of Web 2.0 on government’s strategic political communication of war, terror and insurgency? How are concepts of ownership and copyright changing in the era of the open commons and the law of code? What are the origins, ideas and intellectual pedigree of US neo-conservativism, and how is this reflected in their leading magazine? To what extent are films from Japan and Korea shaped by their auteurs and wider discourses of colonialism, post-colonialism and nationhood? What are the new and changing depictions of Jews, Jewishness and Judaism and what does this say about our confidence or anxieties about Jewish identity and history? Our cultural politics focus is evidenced further in our external collaborations such as Representing Prostitution, Sex Work and Sex Trafficking Network with Dr Danielle Hipkins University of Exeter. This asks questions such as: What are the dominant representations of prostitution, sex work and sex trafficking?
> Visit our Political Communication and Cultural Politics projects page.
Cultural and Creative Knowledge and Economy
Our staff are engaged with questions that fall under the rubric of cultural and creative knowledge and economy. This is exemplified by our expertise in advertising that asks questions about contemporary and nascent forms of advertising, predicated on dataveillance and the commodification of subjectivity. Such notions invite questions about privacy and the balance between regulation and legislation. Our focus on cultural and creative economy is seen further in our expertise in screenwriting and adaptation and our close links with the Screenwriting Research Network, and the Association of Adaptation Studies. We ask questions like: What is the role of the screenwriting process in the re-imagining of literature? What is the changing status of the film script, and how does this affect readings of films? How can a story be adapted for multiple modes of consumption (screen, page, hypertext, game)? Do multimodality and interactivity change the ways that creative practitioners engage with their audiences?
> Visit our Cultural and Creative Knowledge and Economy projects page
The School works collaboratively within the College of Arts, Education and Humanities to embrace practice-as-research. The intersection with theory and practice is reflected throughout our postgraduate taught degrees, and many of our PhDs, as well as in the research interests of staff members, particularly in their explorations of creative writing; and of space-time in performance and in digital artifacts. Such explorations enable the creative and the critical to be mutually informing, opening up diverse and innovative lines of inquiry and insight into areas such as dance performance, digital writing, writing for the stage and screen, adaptation, creative writing and documentary practice, with relevance both to academia and the world of the Creative and Cultural Industries. We ask questions like: what happens to the choreographer’s authorship in site-specific dance? How are the spatial orientations of dancer and audience disrupted when the tools of dance and rock-climbing are combined? What are the potentials for movement in virtual worlds, and what sorts of spaces do these open up? How are professional journalistic strivings towards objectivity compromised in documentary practice? How does writing for multiple communication modes affect the writer's process and perspective with regard to story?
> Visit our Practice-as-Research projects page.