Elizabeth Nathanson 

Associate Professor, Media & Communication
elizabethnathanson@muhlenberg.edu 
Walson 102 

Background

B.A., Haverford College
M.A., Ph.D., Northwestern University

Nathanson's research examines representations of femininity in popular culture.  She takes a cultural studies approach to the analysis of gendered representations, attending to how popular culture reproduces power structures, but can also offer moments of pleasure that resist those power structures.  Much of her research analyzes depictions of femininity on television, however she also has published work on the relationships between gender and new media, popular film and consumer culture.  Her book, Television and Postfeminist Housekeeping: No Time for Mother (Routledge, 2013) examines how contemporary American television and associated digital media from the 1990s-present depict women's everyday lives as homemakers, career women and mothers.  Specifically, this book argues that television constructs panics about domestic time scarcity while at the same time offering solutions for those very panics.  Other publications extend this exploration of popular media and depictions of women's labor in public and private spaces.  She has written about how popular culture depicts "women's work" when women are bakers in her chapter "Sweet Sisterhood: Cupcakes as Sites of Feminized Consumption and Production" (published in Cupcakes, Pinterest, and Ladyporn: Feminized Popular Culture in the Early Twenty-First Century, Indiana University Press, 2015) and when women are fashion bloggers in the essay "Dressed for Economic Distress: Blogging and the 'New' Pleasures of Fashion" (published in Gendering the Recession: Media and Culture in an Age of Austerity, Duke University Press, 2013).  Her scholarship has also appeared in the journals Television and New Media, Antenna, Cinema Journal Teaching Dossier, and Framework.  She teaches Media and Society, Documentary Research, Media Theory and Methods, Feminist Media Studies, 20th Century Media, Gender Communication and Culture, and Popular Culture and Communication.