Marcus Christopher Alt’s 2015 dissertation examines the place and experience of gay identity within the US military. Using interviews with thirteen servicemen – some actively serving, others retired – Alt explores concepts of masculinity within the military and through the experiences of the interviewees. There were no set criteria pertaining to “outness” of sexual orientation […]
This doctoral dissertation by Munni Deb seeks to understand the ways in which South Asian American college students’ experiences of college are affected by their parents’ educational statuses. By analyzing data on academic success and emotional well-being, the author looked at whether students whose parents attended college have advantages in those areas over first generation college students. Deb writes, More than […]
The value of college education goes beyond simply gaining academic knowledge, and researcher Ryan David Padgett explores two particular social benefits that are often overlooked by those who allocate funding to higher education: altruism and social responsibility. Padgett gives special consideration in his study to first generation college students. Padgett writes, Findings from this pretest-posttest, longitudinal study suggest […]
In her 2013 dissertation, Georginna LaNelle Martin explores the ways in which social class mediates the experiences of White, low-income, first-generation students as they progress through higher education. Using a critical theoretical lens, Martin analyzes how this aspect of their identity influenced how these students viewed themselves and others in the college context. …the many hours low-income, […]
Kristine E. Newhall’s 2013 dissertation looks at gender barriers in gyms and how space impacts use across gender. Looking at three Massachusetts-based gyms, she traces the use and disuse of gym space and its consequences for women’s fitness, who owns it and who shapes it.
In this collection of performance essays, Suzanne Marie Cody uses shoes and clothes to explore the many lives a woman may live. Each pair conveys a different experience, a different time and different lessons like chapters of a book, while constantly calling attention to what it means to walk a mile in a woman’s shoes – whether they’re hiking boots or red stilettos.
In this dissertation, Donna A. Lancianese looks at the impact of social class on how we relate to one another. Through focus groups at the University of Iowa, she establishes socially constructed profiles of the “Rich Guy” and the “Poor Guy,” using them to gain a greater understanding of how social classes are constituted and how gender alters or conforms to these ideas.
Linghua Xu’s 2015 MA thesis uses the 1934 Shanghai film New Woman to closely examine the place of women in Chinese society. Writes Xu: The conception of “new woman”(xin nü xing, 新女性) was popularized during the New Culture Movement beginning from 1919, which was a whole-scale criticism and rethinking of Chinese culture surrounding almost every aspect of Chinese society. […]
Robert Arthur Gillespie’s 2015 dissertation looks at cities, science fiction literature and the place of race within them. Looking at urban expanses like Frank Herbert’s Arrakeen in Dune, Gillespie uses “two city typologies […] the ‘imperial city’ that reigns at the heart of sf’s many empires, and the empty metropolis of the ‘dead city’ or ‘ghost city.'”
Daniel Lawrence Taradash’s 2015 dissertation looks at how popular heavyweight champions were shaped by the political and social environments of their time. Focusing on Floyd Patterson, Sonny Liston, Joe Frazier and George Foreman, he explores the differences in opinion each man had regarding issues such as segregation and how they defined themselves against Ali’s largely ignored, hardline segregationist stance.
Dr. Sherri Edvalson’s 2013 dissertation explores how students talk about race and what influences their views. Her focus on students from various racial backgrounds attending a small, private Midwestern university yields interesting results.
The purpose of this study was to gather descriptive data on the experiences of Black female student athletes. A better understanding of the experiences of Black female student athletes as students, as athletes, and as developing young women may help student affairs practitioners better understand their collegiate experience; provide them with information to make decisions […]
Patrick B. Oray’s 2013 dissertation, “Another layer blackness: theorizing race, ethnicity, identity in U.S. black public sphere,” takes a more granular look at the construction of race in America with particular emphasis on migration and immigration.
This dissertation advances previous research on the journalistic interpretive community by placing news at the center of a community’s construction of place. By focusing on the construction of Iowa City, Iowa’s “Southeast Side” – neighborhoods home to predominantly newly arrived black residents from Chicago and other urban areas – this study identifies dominant news characterizations […]
Eric David Johnson’s 2012 dissertation examines the idea of “authenticity” in various kinds of musical genres. He looks to the years between 1935 and 1965 and jazz, Afro-Carribbean musical forms, and blues revivalism to gain an understanding of how the stories we tell ourselves socially and culturally about what is and is not real African American music get told.
Aaron Dickinson Sachs’s 2009 dissertation looks at mid-1980s hip-hop and its entrance into the landscape of national popular culture and the complications of appropriation and representation.