Popular Culture and IR – With Robert A. Saunders

Popular Culture and IR, curated by Robert A. Saunders, focuses on the relationship between popular culture and international relations. Posts will predominately focus on current affairs, with the aim of providing timely interrogation of events in the news. However, other posts will consider larger issues in popular culture and geopolitics, especially how pop-cultural production is emerging as site of diplomacy, economic control, foreign policy, and the exercise of so-called ‘soft power’. Through guest blogs by scholars associated with the newly-developed SUNY-Leeds-Copenhagen Digital Popular Geopolitics Network, and affiliate networks of popular geopolitics researchers, this blog adds to the burgeoning literature on the popular culture-world politics continuum.

Chapo ‘El Bandito’ Alger

Chapo ‘El Bandito’ Alger

If we come to see the drug epidemic as the health issue it is, el Chapo may become a genuine pop-cultural icon for the masses, not just a hackneyed Mexican ‘Robin Hood’.

‘Warm Bodies’: A ZomRomCom Discourse on Counterinsurgency

‘Warm Bodies’: A ZomRomCom Discourse on Counterinsurgency

The hit 2013 zombie movie ‘Warm Bodies’ offers a means of understanding counterinsurgency strategies, as well as a critique of such strategies.

Making Feminist Sense of ‘The Americans’

Making Feminist Sense of ‘The Americans’

Reading ‘The Americans’ through an Enloe inspired lens offers an example of the potential to explore the feminist critique of the public/private divide.

The Congress of EuroVision: Building European Community One Bricolage at a Time

The Congress of EuroVision: Building European Community One Bricolage at a Time

By taking on the kitschy blandishments of the Eurovision and by contributing to the construction of shared experience, post-Soviet nations brand themselves as European.

The Forgotten Story of ‘Me Llamo Martina Sola’

The Forgotten Story of ‘Me Llamo Martina Sola’

Outside of Latin America telenovelas are perceived as a generic product. But each country possesses a unique form of telenovela, identifiable by its stylistic attributes.

Sláinte: The Performative Geopolitics of the Irish Pub

Sláinte: The Performative Geopolitics of the Irish Pub

With the internationalisation of the Irish pub one should note the performative geopolitics that typically characterise the space: historic maps, flags and rebel songs.

‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’ and IR Theory

‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’ and IR Theory

Hollywood has a long history of trading in subtle political messaging and reinforcing the notion of US military might as a force for good, even when things get ugly.

The Private Life of a Nation in Crisis

The Private Life of a Nation in Crisis

National TV fiction should not be excluded from the study of world politics, as it maintains a strong connection with a given culture’s everyday experiences.

There Aren’t Any Moderate Muslims in France

There Aren’t Any Moderate Muslims in France

Charlie Hebdo has often played the role of public conscience in France, raising important concerns, lashing out at social injustice, and parodying public idiocy.

Why Popular Culture? Why Now?

Why Popular Culture? Why Now?

The new blog will seek to make sense of the relationship between pop culture and world politics. In every instance, we will make sure that we take pop culture seriously.

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