[csaa-forum] Professor John Street, Monash University, 21 June, 3-4.30pm

shane homan Shane.Homan at monash.edu
Thu Jun 7 14:37:56 CST 2012

Research Unit in Media Studies Public Lecture
Monash University, Melbourne

Thursday, 21 June, 3.00-4.30pm Building S, Room 2.32, Caulfield campus

Professor John Street
Co-Director of media at uea and Professor of Politics at the University of 
East Anglia, UK

Style as Substance? The Power of Celebrity Politics

Early in 2012, the musician Youssou N'Dour announced that he was going 
to run for President of Senegal. The previous year there had been 
speculation that the actor, Matt Damon, might be making a bid for high 
office. Meanwhile, in accounts of the Arab Spring, a role was assigned 
to musicians (like El General in Tunisia) in inspiring, and even leading 
the rebellions. The Occupy movement too attracted its share of celebrity 
supporters.  The instances of celebrity politics continue to 
proliferate, and with it a growing academic literature. This paper looks 
at the phenomenon of the celebrity politician, accounting for its rise, 
analysing its impact, and assessing its value. It does so by looking at 
the competing theories that have been advanced to explain celebrity 
politics, and at individual case studies in order to establish whether 
or not we can talk of the political power of celebrities.

Professor John Street's most recent book is Music & Politics (Polity 
Press 2011), following on from titles that include Politics & 
Technology, Rebel Rock: the Politics of Popular Music, and Politics and 
Popular Culture. He is the co-editor of the Cambridge Companion to Pop & 
Rock, an academician of the Academy of Social Sciences, and a member of 
the ESRC Centre for Competition Policy. Professor Street also wrote 
music reviews for The Times for over a decade.

The Research Unit in Media Studies (RUMS) is a collective of Monash 
University researchers committed to the study of media theories, 
histories, practices and industries. A particular emphasis of the Unit 
is the development and inclusion of postgraduate researchers in events 
and activities.

No RSVP necessary. All welcome.

Contact: Brett Hutchins (Brett.Hutchins at monash.edu Phone: 03 9903-2098).

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