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PhD Program Suggestions for LGBTQ+ Identity Construction (w/Masculinity Focus)


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Hey, Folks!

I have been investigating various programs but thought I would crowd-source for additional insight or suggestions:

I'm planning on applying to phd programs this coming fall to research the way gender (and particularly masculinity) is policed and performed, especially among adolescents, and especially vis-à-vis social media. I'm interested in the ways Instagram, for example, both expands and contracts ideas about "optimal" and optional gender performance. More generally, I am interested in the way media (soc med/tv/internet) and institutions (school, gov) shape these concepts and the way these communities evolve. 

So far, I have looked into sociology, media/comm, and gender studies programs at the following schools: UMich (soc, comm); Northwestern (soc [they have SPAN for soc of sexuality], media/tech/society), UChic (soc); UWisc (soc, comm); UT Austin (soc, comm); and OSU (soc, gender studies). When I comb through scholarly articles, however, I sometimes find that the scholars are in anth or even psych depts, and, overall, the scholars tend to come from all over, including lots of European unis or places that don't offer phd programs.

I would prefer to stay in the Midwest to be drivable to family (and the lower cost of living); programs in NYC and CA are programmatically/philosophically appealing but sound financially even more challenging than a phd will baseline be. I am planning to apply mostly to competitive programs, as well, for the sake of funding (I am currently a full-time teacher, so not getting in somewhere this year doesn't spell disaster) and future employability (as an academic or beyond). My own academic background is competitive though lacking in research; I'll have to make the case that my life experiences as a gay/queer man (theatre actor and teacher) inform, enrich, and compel my research proposal. 

I am hoping someone with similar interdisciplinary interests might be able to offer some insight or feedback--I'd greatly appreciate it! :)

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@KJC2105- There are so many ways to look into this subject and each discipline might have a different way of looking at it. Have you considered if there's a certain discipline that you might prefer? It's quite possible that a lot of places might not have a PHD specifically in Gender or Sexuality Studies but they might have a graduate certificate which might fulfill what you're looking after and would greatly expand the programs available to you in the Midwest. 

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18 minutes ago, Warelin said:

@KJC2105- There are so many ways to look into this subject and each discipline might have a different way of looking at it. Have you considered if there's a certain discipline that you might prefer? It's quite possible that a lot of places might not have a PHD specifically in Gender or Sexuality Studies but they might have a graduate certificate which might fulfill what you're looking after and would greatly expand the programs available to you in the Midwest. 

@Warelin, I have primarily thought about investigating it from within a sociology department. I have found examples of students researching similar threads in queer studies through soc; they just are not super common, it seems. I wasn't sure if a communications/media studies dept would make more sense, or if anyone might know of a different interdisc program or even a certain researcher I have overlooked whose program might be worth a look! My preferred methodology would be ethnography, which soc or anth would facilitate, but which would also be an option as an interdisciplinarian, I guess.

Edited by KJC2105
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I think this is a very interesting topic. I have begun to research queer theory and sociology and would be interested to learn more about graduate programs and or professors in this area.  While I am not opposed to statistics, I would prefer not to take any more than one such class in graduate school. I have been researching programs and many require two or three statistics classes. So, anyway what types of authors and articles would you suggest reading? I just bought a book called Queer Theory/Sociology that addresses some of this.

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