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[Commlist] The Cultural Politics of Meghan Markle Symposium

Tue Sep 24 12:01:29 GMT 2019

The Cultural Politics of Meghan Markle


9.30am-5pm, Friday 15^th  November, Brockway Room, Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL

£20 unsalaried, £30 salaried including all catering.

We are proud to announce 14 scholars from different disciplines and countries around the globe, coming together to examine the cultural politics of Meghan Markle. They will share their forthcoming work from two special issues on Markle edited by Dr Hannah Yelin and Dr Laura Clancy: ‘Disciplining the M/Other: examining contemporary mediated motherhood through the case of Meghan Markle’, for /Women’s Studies in Communication/ and* ‘*Race, Royalty and the Cultural Politics of Meghan Markle: Elites, Inequalities and a Woman in the Public Eye’ for /Women’s Studies International Forum./ Their work takes a range of approaches to the topic including cultural history, black studies, critical race studies, Maori studies, sociological, Americanist, women’s and gender studies, film and media, education, digital media, and marketing and advertising.

Papers will respond to Markle's construction in the media and the popular imagination in relation to conceptions of pregnancy and motherhood, intersections of gender, race, age, and class, public performances of femininity and the scrutiny these receive, the discussions she has provoked around gender and race, her position as an American actor who has married into the British Royal Family, and the questions these raise around nationality identity, (cultural) capital, celebrity, (post)colonialism, politics and power. Each paper takes a different perspective to the cultural and representational politics that surround these public media events and the neoliberal, commodified, sexist, racist, ageist rhetorics that circulate within them. Markle as a public figure is a rich site through which to examine the gender, racial and class politics of structures such as celebrity, royalty and matrimony.

Schedule (may be subject to change)

  * *09:30 Editor’s welcome, coffee, pastries and paper* ‘Monarchy is a
    Feminist Issue’, Dr Laura Clancy, Lancaster University
  * ‘An “Unsuitable Mother” and “Colourful Princess”? The Use of
    Motherhood to Discipline Meghan Markle’, Dr Jon Ward, University of
    East Anglia
  * ‘The neoliberal politics of Meghan’s ‘baby bump’’, Prof. Liza
    Tsaliki, University of Athens
  * *Coffee break*
  * ‘“How any woman does what they do is beyond comprehension”: Meghan
    Markle and the masking of maternal labours’, Prof. Shani Orgad,
    London School of Economics, Prof. Kathryn Baldwin, Tulane University
  * ‘A Question of Contrast: Unpacking the Mail Online’s Depiction of
    Meghan Markle’s Motherhood’, Mary McGill, University of Ireland, Galway
  * ‘Pregnancy Age Shaming: Fertility and the Royal Pregnancy’, Dr
    Rebecca Feasey, Bath Spa University
  * *Lunch*
  * ‘’A New Wrinkle’: Age, Race and Writing Meghan Markle’, Dr Rachael
    McLennan, University of East Anglia
  * ‘Meghan, the Monarchy and Multiculturalism (Re)Mixed’, Dr Francesca
    Sobande, Cardiff University
  * ‘Meghan Markle’s Courtship of a Colonised Commonwealth. Connecting
    with Aotearoa/ New Zealand’, Dr Helene Connor, University of Auckland
  * ‘I like my baby heir with baby hair and afros": Meghan Markle,
    Beyoncé, Tiana and the womanist poetics of Black majesty’, Dr Nicole
    Willson, University of Central Lancashire
  * *Coffee break*
  * ‘‘It’s All About the Poise’: Meghan Markle, Doria Raglan, and Black
    Motherhoods’. Prof. Fiona Handyside, Exeter University
  * ‘Curvy, Fit, Skinny or Pregnant: Meghan Markle’s Body in the Media’,
    Tessa Nunn, Duke University
  * Editor’s closing remarks and paper ‘‘The best thing about Meghan
    Markle is she’s got a bit of black in her’: Girls making meaning
    around Meghan Markle’, Dr Hannah Yelin, Oxford Brookes University
  * *17:00 Close*

Nico Carpentier
New book:
Experiments in the performance of participation and democracy
Download at:
New book:
Collected Works of the Brussels Discourse Theory Group
Charles University in Prague
Institute of Communication Studies and Journalism
Smetanovo nábřeží 6, 110 01 Praha 1, Czech Republic
Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) - Free University of Brussels
& Uppsala University
The Commlist
International Association for Media and Communication Research
Participatory Communication Research Section
E-mail (CharlesU): (nico.carpentier /at/
E-mail (UUppsala): (nico.carpentier /at/
E-mail (VUBrussels): (nico.carpentier /at/
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Phone (CharlesU): +420 222 112 134
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