Foundational book research: “For the lulz: Community through Antifandom.” (Prof. Jaime Roots)

1 student is sought for a project on “Foundational book research: “For the lulz: Community through Antifandom.” ” with Prof. Jaime Roots that will begin on 6/3/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

The aspect of fandom is largely ignored when discussing cybermobbing behavior. Cybermobbers might not be fans, but in this project we will investigate those who can be defined as antifans or people who form fandoms around something “that they delightfully detest.” Even if the approach to the material might seem different, the types of behaviors fans and antifans engage in and their emotional investment is very often the same. This research is an important contribution to current discussions surrounding the spread of (mis)information, the role of social media companies in the protection of civil and human rights, and discussions of protections of freedom of speech. Researcher goals for the project: (1) aid in conducting primary research by investigating German-language websites and forums. (2) conduct secondary research in various interdisciplinary areas such as German, Folklore, Fan, and New Media Studies in both English and German. (3) further the researcher’s language development in reading, writing, and speaking

Prerequisites

Advanced German-language skills

Special Comments

Research can be conducted remotely throughout the summer

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/3/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/9/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 1

Contact Information: Prof. Jaime Roots (jroots@wlu.edu)

Florence As It Was: A Digital Reconstruction of a Renaissance City (Prof. George Bent)

3 students are sought for a project on “Florence As It Was: A Digital Reconstruction of a Renaissance City” with Prof. George Bent that will begin on 6/15/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

Florence As It Was combines three-dimensional models of fifteen buildings, digitized documents, photogrammetric models of 180 art works, translations of early modern descriptions, and original interpretative essays in an academic, not-for-profit, web-based platform that aims to recreate major monuments of the Tuscan city as they appeared in the year 1500. Complete with a geo-referenced database of nearly 2000 images (searchable by artist name, title, date of installation, subject, patron, and iconography), users may use a high-resolution map of the city produced in 1584 locate and see artworks in their original locations as they appeared to audiences in the fifteenth century.

Prerequisites

Students should be familiar spreadsheets and have some experience working with data. Students should also have taken at least one course in art history at W&L.

Special Comments

It would be wise to take ARTH 383 in Spring Term. But it’s not mandatory.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/15/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/23/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Prof. George Bent (bentg@wlu.edu)

#MeToo and the Music Industry (Prof. Kate Grover)

3 students are sought for a project on “#MeToo and the Music Industry” with Prof. Kate Grover that will begin on 6/9/2024 and last for 8 weeks

Project Description:

Women musicians face tremendous obstacles in the music industry, including unequal pay, sexist media representation, and physical and emotional violence. Yet women musicians are also at the forefront of activism to make popular music safe and accessible. In this project, students will conduct research examining women musicians’ activism against gender inequality in the American popular music industry from the 1960s to the present. Specifically, we’ll focus our research on musicians’ approaches to fighting sexual harassment, intimate partner violence, unjust conservatorships, and restrictive beauty standards and fitness regimes. Over eight weeks, SRS scholars will work in collaboration with myself and each other to build a literature review contextualizing the 21st century #MeToo movement within women musicians’ historical struggles for bodily autonomy. Students will engage in a variety of interdisciplinary research methods central to Popular Music Studies, Media Studies, and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, including analyzing the first-person accounts in musicians’ memoirs, collecting qualitative data from documentaries, examining court cases and legal policies, and evaluating the effectiveness of musicians’ activism by surveying YouTube comments, blogs, and other forms of audience and fan criticism.

Prerequisites

Student researchers must have completed at least one course in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Completion of WGSS 120: Introduction to Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies preferred.

Special Comments

While I would prefer to meet weekly with students in Lexington throughout the course of the 8-week project, I am amenable to working with students that need to research virtually for either part or all of the 8-week period.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/9/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/2/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Prof. Kate Grover (kgrover@wlu.edu)

Project 1. Immigrants’ Experience Accessing Welfare: Evidence from Brazil and Peru – Project 2. Immigrants’ Identity, Economic Contributions and Deportation Attitudes (Prof. Zoila Ponce de León)

3 students are sought for a project on “Project 1. Immigrants’ Experience Accessing Welfare: Evidence from Brazil and Peru – Project 2. Immigrants’ Identity, Economic Contributions and Deportation Attitudes” with Prof. Zoila Ponce de León that will begin on 6/10/2024 and last for 10 weeks

Project Description:

P1: Connecting the central themes of my research agenda: healthcare and immigration, one of my newest research projects will undertake the study of immigrants’ experiences accessing welfare services and benefits, specifically healthcare and social assistance. In several Latin American countries, all immigrants, regardless of immigration status, have the right to access basic healthcare services, and most of them qualify for social assistance programs. Yet, immigrants face several hurdles in their access. My project will delve into how perceptions of welfare deservingness translate into immigrants’ experiences. In a previous study of Brazil, I found that there are more negative attitudes toward immigrants’ access to social assistance compared to healthcare. Moreover, Venezuelan immigrants were seen as less deserving in comparison to Haitians and Bolivians. Although these results highlight important differences in how immigrants are perceived as “deserving,” they miss the immigrant experience. In this new project, I seek to understand how perceptions of welfare deservingness translate into immigrants’ experiences accessing healthcare services and conditional cash transfers in Peru and Brazil. P2: This research project explores a topic that has received limited attention in existing scholarship on immigration attitudes, but that is central to the political discourse of many countries: the deportation of undocumented immigrants. We examine how immigrants’ identity and economic characteristics interact to shape deportation attitudes. In particular, we focus on immigrants’ sexual orientation and economic contributions. We investigate the topic in two countries where immigration is a key political issue and where populist right-wing politicians have been successful in recent years: the United States and Brazil. In each country, we conducted original survey experiments with samples of respondents that mirror census quotas for several key socio-demographic indicators. Preliminary analysis reveals interesting findings: 1) immigrants’ identity characteristics play a limited but significant role in shaping support for deportation once the undocumented trait is considered, with gay immigrants facing stronger calls for deportation, 2) support for deportation is significantly stronger in the U.S. than in Brazil, and 3) in both countries, while economic contributions strongly decrease support for the deportation of immigrants with various profiles, the effect seems to be stronger for gay over straight immigrants. This suggests that immigrants who are targets of stronger prejudice benefit more when they are presented with positive traits. Further analysis will examine how different subgroups of respondents express support for immigrants with different profiles.

Prerequisites

No prior coursework is necessary. Skills that would help include the following (but are not required): data collection, data analysis, revision of theoretical frameworks, experience with revision of academic work, interest in one or more of the topics and/or countries of study, and Spanish or Portuguese language skills. The students will have the opportunity to partake in political science research on two highly impactful topics: immigrants’ experience accessing welfare in Brazil and Peru, and immigration attitudes in Brazil and the U.S. Students will learn about data collection, analyzing datasets from surveys, constructing and revising graphs and tables, and reviewing relevant literature. The students will practice research techniques and scientific inquiry, gaining valuable research experience, which they may apply in future research endeavors in and out of the classroom.

Special Comments

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/10/2024

Estimated End Date: 8/16/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 3

Contact Information: Prof. Zoila Ponce de León (zponcedeleon@wlu.edu)

Land Speculation, Finance, and Indigenous Dispossession in the Early U.S. (Prof. Franklin Sammons)

2 students are sought for a project on “Land Speculation, Finance, and Indigenous Dispossession in the Early U.S.” with Prof. Franklin Sammons that will begin on 6/3/2024 and last for 8 weeks

Project Description:

Students will work with Professor Sammons to help him conduct research for his book project on the Yazoo Land Sales. In collaboration with the professor, students will undertake a variety of research tasks, including: data entry from old land records; researching the biographies of land speculators; reading and taking notes on a range of primary sources, including digitized newspapers from Georgia in the 1790s and early 1800s, and digitized correspondence from officials in the US War Department. Students will gain experience in different kinds of historical research, learn more about Native American history and the political and economic history of the early US, and learn more about the variety of undertakings necessary to produce historical scholarship.

Prerequisites

Students should have some experience conducting primary source research. Other skills that could be helpful but are not required: Experience with data entry, and making charts and graphs, in Excel. Experience reading cursive Experience using ArcGIS Advanced Spanish reading comprehension (for some Spanish language documents)

Special Comments

It is ok if students perform some of this work remotely/away from campus.

Project Information

Estimated Start Date: 6/3/2024

Estimated End Date: 7/26/2024

Maximum number of students sought: 2

Contact Information: Prof. Franklin Sammons (fsammons@wlu.edu)