Tara Lee completed a PhD (Simon Fraser University) in Asian Canadian literature, with field specialties in Canadian Literature and eighteenth-century British Literature. Previous to joining ASRW, she taught in the Department of English Language and Literatures, as well as in the Department of Wood Science in the Faculty of Forestry. Her teaching and research interests include critical race studies, techno/new media studies, dystopian literature, young adult literature, and Canadian literature. She also holds a BComm (Accounting) and works as a freelance journalist, broadcaster, and copywriter.
Representations in Popular Culture (WRDS 150A)
Game of Thrones. The Bachelor. The latest BTS music video. These pop culture texts are ones that you may consume regularly, albeit sometimes uncritically. However, the representations within them have the potential to both reinforce as well as challenge dominant assumptions related to certain identity categories, such as race, gender, sexuality, and perceived dis/ability. This course examines research by scholars in a variety of disciplines who theorize questions surrounding representations in popular culture, as well as offer specific critical readings of some of these pop culture examples. As you examine and discuss relevant scholarly articles, you will become acquainted with the conventions of scholarly discourse, disciplinarity, as well as the production of new research knowledge within a field. Ultimately, the goal is for you to increase your critical engagement with familiar texts, in addition to cultivating your skills and confidence as an academic writer and researcher.
Constructions and Implications of Race (WRDS 150B)
During this recent COVID-19 pandemic, troubling data has emerged in relation to racial inequalities when it comes to the effects of the virus. What role does race play in your life? How do you see it circulating in universities, workplaces, social media, the political realm, and social environments? Although “race” is considered to be a social construct, as an identity marker, it continues to have significant material consequences in terms of access to resources, perceptions of legitimacy, marketing strategies, and even socializing patterns. This course looks at research by scholars in a variety of disciplines who examine complex issues related to race (e.g. how race figures in conservation projects), often also taking into account other intersectional identity categories (e.g. gender, class, sexuality). As you read and discuss relevant scholarly articles, you will also become acquainted with the conventions of scholarly discourse, disciplinarity, as well as the production of new research knowledge within a field. Ultimately, the goal is for you to increase your critical engagement with the world around you, in addition to cultivating your skills and confidence as an academic writer and researcher.