Announcement: Congratulations to Our Newly Minted MAs and Ph.D.s!

Commencement Fireworks

The end of the semester is upon us, and that means the university will be awarding MAs and Ph.D.s to many students in the American Studies department. These folks have successfully completed some fascinating works of cultural analysis in the forms of dissertations and master’s reports, the titles of which you can find below.

Congratulations to all!


Gavin Benke, “Electronic Bits and Ten Gallon Hats: Enron, American Culture, and the Postindustrial Political Economy”

John Cline, “Permanent Underground: Radical Sounds and Social Formations in 20th Century American Musicking”

Christina Garcia Lopez, “Social Violence, Social Healing: The Merging of the Political and the Spiritual in Chicano/a Literary Production”

Danny Gerling, “American Wasteland: A Social and Cultural History of Excrement, 1860-1920”

Carly Kocurek, “Masculinity at the Video Game Arcade: 1972-1983”

Stephanie Kolberg, “Spaces of Indulgence: Desire, Disgust, and the Aesthetics of Mass Appeal”

Allison Wright, “Gender, Power, and Performance: Representations of Cheerleaders in American Culture”


Carrie Andersen, “Virtual Residues: Historical Uncertainty and John F. Kennedy’s Assassination in Videogames”

Andrew Gansky, “Alluring Decay, Disquieting Beauty: Andrew Moore’s Detroit Photographs”

Amanda Gray, “Modern Displacements: Urban Injustice Affecting Working Class Communities of Color in East Austin”

Jen Rafferty, “Building Identity:  The Miami Freedom Tower and the Construction of a Cuban American Identity in the Post-Mariel Era”

Kathryn Sutton, “Rearticulating Historic Fort Snelling: Dakota Memory and Colonial Haunting in the American Midwest”

Joe Thompson, “I’ve Got A Strange Feeling: A Grimoire of Affective Materiality”

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