Launch of two new CAMRI Policy Briefs @ University of Westminster
Sep 27 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Launch of two new CAMRI Policy Briefs @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

This event will launch two new books, published by the University of Westminster Press, as part of the new CAMRI Policy Brief series, in which researchers from the Communication and Media Research Institute (CAMRI) at the University of Westminster will provide insights into their recent research and its findings.

The event will feature two presentations:

Jacob Johanssen will present recent research on attitudes towards disfigurement in the media. In the policy brief ‘Appearance, Discrimination and the Media’, he claims together with co-authors Diana Garrisi and Laima Janciute that the portrayal of disfigurement in the UK media must change. Policy recommendations in terms of editorial practices, media literacy education and regulation will be introduced.

Sally-Anne Gross and George Musgrave will highlight the findings of their project ‘Can Music Make You Sick?’, which investigated working conditions in the UK music industry. Based on the policy brief ‘Well-Being and Mental Health in the Gig Economy’, they will review policy measures that may help or harm gig economy workers. A much-needed debate needs to happen about the psychological implications of precarious work and this presentation aims to contribute to this.

The presentations will be followed by a Q&A session with the authors.

Printed copies of the policy briefs will be available for free at the event.

The event is free for anyone interested, registration via Eventbrite is required.

About the CAMRI Policy Brief Series:

The CAMRI Policy Brief series provides rigorous and evidence-based policy advice and policy analysis on a variety of media and communication-related topics. In an age where the accelerated development of media and communications creates profound opportunities and challenges for society, politics and the economy, this series cuts through the noise and offers up-to-date knowledge and evidence grounded in original research in order to respond to these changes in all their complexity. By using Open Access and a concise, easy-to-read format, this peer-reviewed series aims to make new research from the University of Westminster available to the public, to policymakers, practitioners, journalists, activists and scholars both nationally and internationally.

The CAMRI Policy Briefs are available free to download at:

In The Name Of Your Daughter: Film Screening and Discussion with Director and Stars @ University of Westminster
Oct 9 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
In The Name Of Your Daughter: Film Screening and Discussion with Director and Stars @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

Just days after its UK premiere at Raindance, the University of Westminster offers a chance to see the heartbreaking and heartwarming story of the bravest girls in the world who risk their lives to save themselves from FGM and child marriage and the human rights champion who protects them.

The film will be followed by discussions with Giselle Portenier (director), Rhobi Samwelly, who runs the Hope Centre for Girls and Women, and other guests.


6:00 – Doors open

6:20 – Welcome remarks

6:30 – Film Screening starts

8:00 – Discussion with Giselle Portenier (Director), Rhobi Samwelly (FGM Activist), and other guest speakers

8:30 – Floor open to questions

9:00 – Event close

In The Name Of Your Daughter is the heartbreaking and heartwarming fly-on-the-wall story of the most courageous girls in the world, children in Northern Tanzania who are risking their lives to defy their destiny and follow their dreams. These girls, some as young as eight, are running away from home, leaving everything and everyone they love behind to save themselves from female genital mutilation and avoid being sold off into a child marriage. And it’s the story of one of Africa’s most charismatic women, Rhobi Samwelly, a brave local hero who confronts her community and protects the girls in her Safe House.

We made the film with the support of almost 400 people from 30 countries who donated to our Indiegogo fundraising campaign, and with the backing of BBC Storyville, Ikon television from The Netherlands, SVT in Sweden, DR television in Denmark, and YLE television in Finland. Thank you!

We also thank all the brave and beautiful Tanzanian girls who allowed us into their lives and to tell their stories.

More about the film:

More about the Hope Centre for Girls and Women:


This event has been organized by Doug Specht and Michaela O’Brien of the Communication and Media Research Institute at the University of Westminster.

Find out more about our MA Media Campaigning and Social Change:

The Transformation of Internet Media Governance: Live Streaming in China @ University of Westminster
Oct 11 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
The Transformation of Internet Media Governance: Live Streaming in China @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

Yu-li Liu (National Chengchi University, Taiwan) – The Transformation of Internet Media Governance: Live Streaming in China

In the past ten years, online media have had an increasing impact on traditional media. With the development of mobile internet technology, not only the boundary between telecommunications and media is gradually disappearing, but also the boundary between viewers and content producers is becoming increasingly blurred. Live streaming exactly reflects this trend. Since 2015, live streaming platforms in China have developed from a few niche media to popular media and now involve more than 300 million users and 500 registered companies.

In China, media is considered to be an important instrument for maintaining the nation’s culture, social order and national stability. Therefore, it cannot be separated from political propaganda. This is why the Chinese government has been so concerned with the influence of media, including live streaming. In this talk, Professor Liu will examine whether the current model of internet media governance is still a good model for regulating live streaming services in China and she will look at alternative models for regulation.


Professor Liu is a Distinguished Professor of Communications at National Chengchi University (NCCU) in Taiwan. She earned her PhD in telecommunications at Indiana University in 1992. She has been teaching at NCCU for 26 years and served as VP for Research and Development. Professor Liu was a Fulbright scholar and Visiting Professor at a number of universities in different countries.

Her research interests include digital broadcasting, telecom and media law and regulation, IPTV and mobile TV, convergence, big data, telecommunications and media management. She has published numerous books on these topics. Professor Liu has received grants from the US Fulbright Foundation, Interchange Association of Japan and Taiwan’s National Science Council for her research. She has served as President of the Chinese Communication Association and the Taiwan Communication Society.

Psychoanalysis and Digital Media @ University of Westminster
Oct 25 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Psychoanalysis and Digital Media @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

Jacob Johanssen (University of Westminster) – Psychoanalysis and Digital Media

This talk begins with a brief introduction to the field of psychoanalytic media studies. Jacob Johanssen will argue why we should not lose sight of the unconscious, irrational and affective aspects of (using) digital media today. The talk is based on his monograph Psychoanalysis and Digital Culture: Audiences, Social Media, and Big Data (Routledge, 2018) and he will provide an overview of some of the book’s themes. The book develops the psychoanalytic affect theories of Sigmund Freud and Didier Anzieu and applies them theoretically and methodologically to a number of case studies such as television viewing, Twitter use, affective labour on social media, and data mining.

Jacob Johanssen will end the talk by focussing on data mining on social media. Drawing on the psychoanalytic notion of perversion, he shall outline how users are both valued and abused at once by many digital media platforms today. Data mining practices are individualising by promising a bespoke user experience which values the individual subject. They are also disindividualising by mining user data in order to construct user profiles and large datasets.


Jacob Johanssen is a Senior Lecturer in the Communication and Media Research Institute (CAMRI), University of Westminster. His research interests include psychoanalysis and digital media, audience research, affect theories, digital labour, reality television, psychosocial studies, and critical theory.

Making Race in the Cultural Industries @ University of Westminster
Nov 8 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Making Race in the Cultural Industries @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

Anamik Saha (Goldsmiths, University of London) – Making Race in the Cultural Industries

Studies of race, media and ideology have long demonstrated how racial and ethnic minorities are represented in deeply damaging ways – either demonised, exoticised or rendered invisible. But such research, nearly always textual in nature, has been unable to offer an effective political response – other than to demand ‘authentic’ stories or representations. In this contribution, Anamik Saha calls for a ‘cultural industries’ approach to studying race and racism in the media.

Challenging purely textual cultural studies accounts of representation, he will argue that a radical cultural political programme is absolutely contingent upon production strategies – that is, an effective ‘politics of production’. Situating the issue of representation explicitly within a cultural industries framework gives us a more nuanced and complex understanding of the ideological role of the media in the making of race, which in turn leads to a broader understanding of the governance of racial and ethnic identities under neoliberalism.


Anamik Saha is a Lecturer in the Department of Media and Communications, Goldsmiths, University of London. After completing his PhD in Sociology at Goldsmiths, Anamik worked in the Institute of Communication Studies at the University of Leeds, firstly as an ESRC Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, then as a Lecturer in Communications. He has held visiting fellowship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Trinity College, Connecticut.

Anamik’s research interests are in race and the media, with a particular focus on cultural production and the cultural industries. He has had his work published in journals including Media, Culture and Society, Ethnic and Racial Studies, and European Journal of Cultural Studies. With David Hesmondhalgh (2013) he co-edited a special issue of Popular Communication on race and ethnicity in cultural production, and with Dave O’Brien, Kim Allen and Sam Friedman (2017) he co-edited a special issue of Cultural Sociology on inequalities in the cultural industries. His new book Race and the Cultural Industries was published in 2018 by Polity Press.

Empowered: Popular Feminism and Popular Misogyny @ University of Westminster
Nov 22 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Empowered: Popular Feminism and Popular Misogyny @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

Sarah Banet-Weiser (London School of Economics) – Empowered: Popular Feminism and Popular Misogyny

In 2017, we are living in a moment in North America and Europe where feminism has become, somewhat incredibly, popular. It seems as if everywhere you turn, there is an expression of feminism—on a t-shirt, in a movie, in the lyrics of a pop song, in an inspirational Instagram post. There are many different feminisms that currently circulate in popular culture across all media platforms, some connecting with synergy, others struggling for priority and visibility. But feminism is not the only popular phenomenon we need to contend with in the early 21st century. For every popular feminist practice or expression, there is always an accompanying hostile rejoinder or challenge, regardless of the mediated space in which it occurred — whether that was social media, or the legal realm, or corporate culture.

In this talk, Professor Banet-Weiser will discuss the ways in which contemporary popular feminism re-imagines and re-directs what “empowerment” means for girls and women, and how it is restructuring feminist politics within neoliberal culture. For many, a broader acceptance of feminism as an identity, concept, and practice is exhilarating; yet, for those who find feminism to be a threat, this acceptance also stimulates fear, trepidation, aggression, and violence. This talk is about the deeply entwined relationship between the creation and expression of popular feminism and what Professor Banet-Weiser calls popular misogyny.


Sarah Banet-Weiser is Professor and Head of Department in Media and Communications at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She is the author of four books, The Most Beautiful Girl in the World: Beauty Pageants and National Identity (1999); Kids Rule! Nickelodeon and Consumer Citizenship (2007); Authentic™: Brand Culture and the Politics of Ambivalence (2012); and Empowered: Popular Feminism and Popular Misogyny (2018). She is the co-editor of three volumes, Cable Visions: Television Beyond Broadcasting (2007); Commodity Activism: Cultural Resistance in Neoliberal Times (2012), and the forthcoming Racism Post-Race (2019). She is currently the co-editor of Communication, Culture & Critique.

The Impact of Digital Technologies on the Newspaper Press in Mainland China @ University of Westminster
Nov 29 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
The Impact of Digital Technologies on the Newspaper Press in Mainland China @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

Colin Sparks (Hong Kong Baptist University) – The Impact of Digital Technologies on the Newspaper Press in Mainland China

This contribution reviews the impact of digital technologies on Chinese newspapers. The diffusion of the smartphone has precipitated severe economic problems for the printed press. There have been falls in both readership and advertising revenues, which have had an effect on the structure of provincial-level press groups. The decline in economic viability has been felt most severely by the commercially-oriented titles, while the more politically-oriented papers have led the way in finding new sources of funding. These sources tend to tie journalism more tightly to political and economic power and for commercial goals to replace journalistic ones. This shifting balance of economic power has important consequences for the possibility of independent and critical journalism. The empirical material is specific to China, but it highlights more general theoretical questions as to the political economy of the media.


Professor Colin Sparks studied at Sussex, Oxford and Birmingham universities, receiving a doctoral degree from the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies. For many years, he taught at the University of Westminster, where he directed the Communication and Media Research Institute (CAMRI). He joined Hong Kong Baptist University in August 2011. He has taught courses on a range of topics such as media and communication theory, critical theories of the media, new media and society, and comparative and international media. His research interests include media in transitional societies, comparative media systems and the impact of new media on media systems.

Media Coverage of Hate Speech and Discriminative Discourse in Turkey @ University of Westminster
Dec 6 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Media Coverage of Hate Speech and Discriminative Discourse in Turkey @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

Yasemin İnceoğlu (University of Galatasaray, Turkey) – Media Coverage of Hate Speech and Discriminative Discourse in Turkey

Mainstream media in Turkey have gradually become a single voiced propaganda tool that portray a single pro-government perspective. Journalism apart from pro-government propaganda is punished by terminations, interrogations and imprisonment. Polarization between different segments of Turkish society is becoming more pronounced and intolerance more widespread. The mainstream media reproduce and pump hate, both openly and disguisedly based on the concepts such as racism, ethnical prejudice, xenophobia and anti-Semitism while creating its own agenda as the ideological apparatus of the state in Turkey.

In this contribution, Professor İnceoğlu will discuss hate speech, discriminatory discourse and dangerous speech, but also how the media represent the ideology of power. She will examine how hate speech is being disseminated or produced/reproduced by the media. Throughout the seminar, examples of hate speech towards political groups/ethnic origins, refugees, LGBTI groups, disabled ones, and others will be provided. The goal of this seminar is to unveil the existence and rise of hate speech in the absence of independent, accountable, transparent media and figure out the solutions and recommendations to combat with it.


Yasemin İnceoğlu is a Professor of Journalism as well as a member of the UNESCO International Clearinghouse on Children and Violence on the Screen and of the American Biography Institute. She was a visiting scholar at Columbia University (1994), University of Salzburg (2003), New Delhi University (2014) and the European University Institute (2017). She is one of the founding members of the Media Watch Platform in Turkey (2008).

Professor İnceoğlu has been involved in several research projects and is/has been on the advisory board of initiatives investigating hate speech and hate crimes in the press. She has published several books, for example on political campaigning, women in the media and female journalists, hate speech and hate crimes, media and minorities and internet and activism. Her areas of research include international media, war and the media, persuasive communication and hate speech. She teaches Alternative Media and Journalism Rights, Communication Ethics, International Communication and Theories and Models of Communication.