Comic con event drone photography

Media and popular culture research

Explore our work in media and popular culture as part of our Film, Television and Media research

Media is pervasive. It's used to communicate ideas, opinions and ideologies, and new technology is increasing who has access to digital content, and who is able to create it. All of this has direct impact on our popular culture, the texts and objects that we consume and which are used to define who we are as individuals, communities and nations.

In our media and popular culture research, we analyse and critique popular texts that have meaning, to highlight the evolving power relationships between producers and audiences. Our research examines new cultures of production and consumption, and aims to understand how media audiences are becoming content creators.

We're also looking at the relationship between the production of popular culture across various forms – including film, television, music, video games, magazines, comics and animation – and the contexts in which they are consumed. We're examining the cultural and creative links between the creative industries and their audiences too, and the importance of technology and institutions in sharing media and popular culture across international borders.

Our work has been published in journals including Transnational Screens, Screen, the Quarterly Review of Film and Video, the Journal of Popular Culture Reconstruction, the Journal of Fandom Studies, the Journal of Popular Television, the Journal of British Cinema and Television, and the Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television.

Our research covers the following topics

  • Fandom and popular culture
  • History and theory of animation
  • Hollywood film
  • Digital media and new technologies
  • Social media
  • Horror
  • Transmedia storytelling and paratexts
  • Adaptation
  • Comics and film
  • Gender and race
  • Comic book culture
  • American television
  • Latin American Cinema
  • Transnational cultures
  • Magazines and periodicals
  • Comedy and culture

Methods and facilities

Methods used to conduct our research include fan and web ethnographies, feminism, genre studies, postcolonialism, literary studies, philosophical approaches, queer theory, and political theory. We also engage with data and statistical approaches, industry and archival approaches, and textual analysis.

Our facilities include video production suites to teaching spaces. We also hold public lectures and conferences in our own dedicated cinema space.

Collaborations and funders

Our research has had direct impact on public knowledge and the promotion of popular media culture and communities of reception outside of academia.

Working with partners, we have developed and run conventions such as Portsmouth Comic Con, content of international commercial events such as Destination Star Trek at Birmingham NEC, and museum exhibitions at venues such as The City Museum.

We have received funding from bodies such as the AHRC and Heritage Lottery Fund.

Research projects

  • Connecting Sharing Learning: Women, War and Peace, Greenham Common Peace Camp

    This is a community resource, including learning cards and a DVD, aimed at older sections of the population. It is innovative in that it trialled trial new methods of digital and remote collections engagement.

  • Eye appeal is buy appeal: The design, mediation and consumption of Kenwood's kitchen appliances, 1947-2020

    This doctoral project proposal is on the mediation and consumption of Kenwood products, drawing on the Science Museum’s archive (Historical material relating to Kenneth M. Wood and the Kenwood Manufacturing Co.) and object holdings as well as the Kenwood company archives in Havant and material gathered by The Spring Art and Heritage Centre (Havant) for their recent exhibition and film Kenwood in Havant.

  • Portsmyth

    Interactive game created by Supernatural Cities to showcase creative writing, gaming, and the use of folklore and the supernatural in the creation of new narratives of space and place.

  • examines the relationship between fantasy cinema and the medium of animation. 

  • Writing the Hollywood Renaissance: Screenwriters and American Film, 1967-1980

    Drawing on draft scripts and correspondence contained in the Lewis Allen, Carole Eastman, Jay Presson Allen and Paul Schrader collections, this research will form the basis of a journal article (“Renaissance Woman: Carole Eastman, Screenwriting and 1960s and 1970s Hollywood” – to be submitted to the Journal of Screenwriting) and chapters 5 and 6 of a book (working title: Screenwriters of the Hollywood Renaissance).

Publication highlights

Lincoln Geraghty smiling with life solved logo and introduction title

Podcast | Life Solved: Meet the Aca fans

In this episode of the University of Portsmouth’s research podcast Life Solved, Professor Lincoln Geraghty introduces us to the Aca-fans: the academics who are researching the (often positive) social impact of fandom on communities and individuals.

Listen Now

Can true crime be ethical?  - Life Solved logo with pictures and descriptive text

Podcast | Life Solved: Can true crime be ethical? Featuring Dr Megan Hoffman and Dr Simon Hobbs

This week's episode explores the possibilities and the pitfalls of true crime coverage in the 21st cent

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Research staff

Lincoln Gerard George Geraghty Portrait

Professor Lincoln Geraghty

Professor of Media Cultures

School of Film, Media, and Communication

Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries

PhD Supervisor

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Laurel Cevelia Forster Portrait

Dr Laurel Forster

Associate Professor in Cultural History

School of Film, Media, and Communication

Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries

PhD Supervisor

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Rebecca Janicker Portrait

Dr Rebecca Janicker

Senior Lecturer

School of Film, Media, and Communication

Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries

PhD Supervisor

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Deborah Anne Shaw Portrait

Professor Deborah Shaw

Professor of Film and Screen Studies

School of Film, Media, and Communication

Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries

PhD Supervisor

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Our latest news

On the podcast

Three Students utilizing the CCI Future Technologies Virtual TV Studio

Pop Matters

Explore popular culture and its impact on society with our Pop Matters series, produced by the Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries.


Watch on YouTube

Discover our areas of expertise

Media cultures is one of 3 areas of expertise within our Film and Media research. Explore the others below.

Conflict and Culture

Through our research in this area of expertise, we're analysing the artistic treatment of social crisis and military conflict, and how they're represented through media.

Photojournalist surrounded by riot police, Paris, France
Read more

Film studies and screen practice research

We're exploring the relationship between film, screen studies and communities. Explore our film studies and screen practice research.

people in a theatre, watching a film
Read more

Interested in a PhD in Film & Media?

Browse our postgraduate research degrees – including PhDs and MPhils – at our Film & Media postgraduate research degrees page.