Office: HH 269
I wanted to be a computer scientist until I was the only girl in all my high school courses. So I pursued my second love, English, working my way around to computers again eventually, working in digital humanities labs and projects at all three universities I have attended and continuing to this day in my teaching and research. My work focuses on popular reception and remediation of computer technologies, as well as on social media as a platform for auto/biography and activism, particularly through hashtags and selfies. Basically, I fart around on the internet for most of my teaching and research, which is probably better than coding all day anyway.
“(Un)reasonable, (Un)necessary, and (In)appropriate: Biographic Mediation of Neurodivergence in Academic Accommodations.” Biography. Special issue on Biographical Mediation, ed. Ebony Coletu. Vol. 42, no. 2. 2019.
“Micro counter narratives: viral hashtag humour in #DistractinglySexy and #StayMadAbby.” Digital Dilemmas: Transforming Gender Identities and Power Relations in Everyday Life. Eds. Diana C. Parry, Corey W. Johnson, and Simone Fullagar. Springer, 2019. Pages 23-52.
“Of, By, and For the Internet: New Media Studies and Public Scholarship.” Routledge Companion to Digital Media Studies. Jentery Sayers, editor. Routledge, 2017. Pages 56-66.
“’What’s on Your Mind?”: The Coaxing Affordances of Facebook’s Status Update.” Identity Technologies: Producing Online Selves. Julie Rak and Anna Poletti, editors. University of Wisconsin Press, 2013. Pages 112-131.
Grants, fellowships and awards
- 2020: University of Waterloo Outstanding Performance Award
- 2019: Trudeau Foundation Fellowship, 3 years / $150,000
- 2018: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Insight Grant, “Rhetoric of the Selfie,” 3 years / $95,000
- 2011: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Standard Research Grant, "Deciphering Digital Life Writing," 3 years / $58,000.
My research engages with emergent forms of social media as a set of complex and consequential rhetorical, literary, and social practices undertaken by ordinary people across the full spectrum of daily life. My current project, a book on selfies, aims to produce a mode of criticism suitable to extant and future online communication tools, attuned to notions of personal identity, and to the constructive role of technology in mediating these online. Basically, I’m trying to figure out how people decide how to represent themselves online, what motivates these decisions, and what effects they have. Oh yeah, and I’m finishing a book on personal computers in the 1980s.
Areas of graduate supervision
- New Media Studies
- Critical Social Media
- Photography Studies
- History and theory of media
- Critical Race / Gender / Sexuality / Disability Studies