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Media Studies

Media Studies refers to the broad range of interdisciplinary subjects focusing on media culture and production.

Land Acknowledgment

Indiana University and the city of Bloomington occupy lands of enduring historical and cultural significance, and that for some was, is, and will always be home, to a number of Indigenous groups, including the Myaamiaki (Miami), Lënape (Delaware), Saawanwa (Shawnee), kiikaapoa (Kickapoo), and Neshnabé/Bodwéwadmik (Potawatomi) peoples. We honor and acknowledge the ancestral and contemporary caretakers of this place, as well as our nonhuman spirits, elders, and guides, offer gratitude for being held and nourished by the land, and recognize the inherent sovereignty and resilience of all Native communities who have survived and still thrive to this day on Turtle Island in spite of the systemic subjugation, dispossession, and genocide that constitute the ongoing reality of settler-colonialism.

We encourage all, settlers and guests alike, to look beyond acknowledgement and engage with local Indigenous communities while also cultivating thoughtful relations of reciprocity with the sacred land you live on, as well as the many vibrant beings with whom you share it. 

Further Resources & Reading


If you'd like to learn more about the practice and history of indigenous land acknowledgments, consult the resources below. You can also navigate to our full resource guide.

Preliminary Resources

Guides & Toolkits

Critical Takes


To learn more about the tribes, nations, and communities with ties to this land colonially known as the state of Indiana, check out their websites and consider supporting them in an ongoing way however you can:

Myaamiaki (Miami)

Lënape (Delaware)

Saawanwa (Shawnee)

Kiikaapoa (Kickapoo)

Neshnabé/Bodwéwadmik (Potawatomi)

Black Histories & Futures Month

Introduction
In recognition and celebration of Black History Month this February, we have curated a selection of books, films, podcasts, and music that celebrate the voices, writing, lives, and history of Black people in America. This collection loosely centers around Blackness in media—aiming to highlight Black music, pop culture, television, and performance. In these selections you will find Black creators discussing the impact of media misrepresentation on Black masculinity, connections between Black music and culinary traditionsrest as a form of resistance, the history of Black performance in America, Black feminist sound, and ekphrastic Black & queer futures alongside a variety of other topics. We hope that you can utilize this collection alongside resources available to you through the library and IU to recognize and celebrate the contributions of Black intellectuals, writers, poets, chefs, directors, and creators this February. 

Our collection is only a small sampling of texts. See below for additional reading lists:

About the Playlist
In addition to the resources we've gathered in this feature, we've also curated a sampling of music by black artists, across time and genre. To learn more about the deep and varied contributions of black musicians to the development of this medium, take a look at some of the resources we used to make this and other related playlists in the Sounds of Black History Month feature.

Note: To enjoy the playlist in full, click on the white Spotify icon in the upper-right corner of the playlist, and press the "like" (♡) button in the application to save.

Next Steps
National recognition months are a great opportunity to celebrate and participate in events and learning that honor the history of marginalized communities. We recognize, however, that these months, and the creation of resource guides, is only one small step in celebrating and recognizing the contributions of marginalized communities across America. We also recognize that reading books, engaging with films, and listening to music by Black creators is only one aspect of supporting Black communities. To engage more fully, consider supporting local Black businesses, learning about the history and experiences of Black people in Bloomington and at IU, and supporting institutions at IU the are dedicated to Black students. Please see our feature on Local Black History for resources specific to Bloomington, Indiana. To explore Black History Month programming at IU, see the following resources:

While Black History Month, as a formulation, often emphasizes history and the present (and thus maintains a retrospective focus), we acknowledge that there are many Black futures that we can dream, cultivate, and grow together. While we have highlighted a number of resources that imagine a different world, in the (or "a") future we hope to shift our focus to looking forward, with new features and resources that highlight what is possible.

If you'd like to engage more deeply with Black History Month through library resources, the IU Libraries Arts & Humanities department has created a number of resources and features to provide more holistic coverage of Black history:

Feature Films

Documentary Films

Episodes Highlighting Black Voices

Disability Awareness & Pride Months

Introduction
In celebration of National Disability Awareness Month in March, Disability Pride Month in July, and National Disability Employment Month in October, we curated this feature to focus on disabled, neurodivergent, crip, and sick creators in a wide range of mediums. Disability is a topic in film, literature, music, and other media that often gets pushed to the side due to fear, stigma, and pity. This feature is a testament to the vibrant community of disability media and its creators that refuse to let diagnoses or illness stand in the way of artistic expression. 

To read more about disability language and the use of "crip," enjoy this article by Dean Strauss: "Queer Crips: Reclaiming Language," and Brittany Wong's Huffington Post article "It's Perfectly OK to call a Disabled Person 'Disabled,' And Here's Why."

The Playlist
To get started with this feature, we have compiled a selection of music from disabled, sick, and neurodivergent artists from across time and genres. To learn more about these artists and communities, and the particularities of their musical contributions, enjoy some of the resources we used to help make this playlist:

Next Steps
If you would like to engage more with this month-long celebration, the Libraries have curated a number of interrelated resources and features to continue and deepen the conversation. You'll find these, below:

Indiana University Disability Resources
There are a number of resources and services available to students, staff, and faculty on the Bloomington campus. A selection of these is provided here:

Fiction

Poetry

Essays

Memoirs

Feature Films

Documentaries

Short Films

Books

Journal Articles

Multimedia

Visual Art

Hispanic + Latin(x/e) Heritage Month

Introduction
In celebration of National Hispanic American Heritage Month, we have put together a feature commemorating Hispanic and Latine/Latinx artists and creators from across generations.

We recognize that not everyone being celebrated throughout this month align with using labels such as Hispanic or Latin(e/x) that we will be using for the title of this feature. Several terms are more accepted due to different movements in gender equity and nonbinary visibility as well as a collective push back on terms rooted in colonialism. We invite any and all people to celebrate this month and use this feature to explore more about the wide and diverse range of art, film, literature, and general culture of Hispanic and Latin(e/x) people.

For more on the topic of terms and labels, the New York Public Librarian's curator of Latin American, Iberian, and Latino Studies Paloma Celis Carbajal shares more in their article "From Hispanic to Latine: Hispanic Heritage Month and the Terms That Bind Us."

For more on the topic, and this month-long celebration, consult some of the following resources:

About the Playlist
To provide an initial orientation to this feature and the contributions of Latinx artists, we have compiled a chronological survey of songs by musicians from these communities across time and genre. To learn more about Hispanic and Latinx musical worlds, check out some of the resources we used to create this playlist: 

Next Steps
If you would like to engage more with this month-long celebration, the Libraries have curated a number of interrelated resources and features to continue and deepen the conversation. You'll find these, below:

Fiction

Poetry

Essays

Memoirs

Feature Films
For a more comprehensive list of films (both features and documentaries) relevant to this celebration, please visit Media Service's guide to Hispanic History & Heritage Month Streaming and DVD Resources.

Documentaries

Short Films

A sampling of scholarly articles from our electronic databases relevant to Latin(x/e) identity and culture:

Asian American, Native Hawaiian, & Pacific Islander Heritage Month

Introduction
The group of people honored and acknowledged during Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Heritage Month is vast and incredibly diverse. They occupy a wide swath of different immigrant experiences and pasts, from the Chinese immigration to the country’s west coast to prospect for gold to the influx of Indian immigrants that came following the establishment of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965. In these times of prejudice and violence toward many in AAPI and Native Hawaiian communities, it is essential to develop solidarity and recognize our common humanity. People from Asian American and Pacific Islander backgrounds are reflective of America as a whole and their contributions, some of which are shown below, are vital to the quilted pattern of our country’s continually evolving self-expression. To learn more about this celebration, consult some of the resources below:

The Playlist
As an entry point into this feature, we have put together a sampling of contemporary AANHPI artists and their contributions to music across genres. To learn more about these artists and communities, check out some of the resources we used to create the playlist:

Next Steps
If you would like to engage more with this month-long celebration, the Libraries have curated a number of interrelated resources and features to continue and deepen the conversation. You'll find these, below:

Fiction


Poetry

Essays


Memoirs

Feature Films


Documentaries

Poetry & Poetics in Music & Media

Introduction
In conjunction with National Poetry Month, we are exploring the the connections between the tradition of poetry and the study of poetics within media studies and across media forms.

The relationship between cinema and the written word go back to the origins of film as an artistic medium. Before the advent of sound, dialogue was purveyed through the use of intertitles that could often retain a poetic quality. Beyond this initial connection, there is a constellation of films dating back from the beginning of the film industry that capture the lives of poets and the experience of poetry. Below is just a small sampling of this intimate and synergistic connection between the two art forms. 

The Playlist
As an introduction to this feature, we have also created a playlist of music by artists who are renowned as skilled lyricists, sometimes even lauded poets in their own right, as well as songs with lyrics that evoke the rhythm and aesthetics of the poetic tradition. A few of these musicians have also published books of poetry, which you can find in the "Relevant Texts" tab.

To learn more about this music, as well as the history and stakes of positioning of musical lyrics as poetry, check out some of the resources we were inspired by.

Next Steps
If you'd like to engage more deeply with National Poetry Month, the IU Libraries Arts & Humanities department has put together a number of features and guides to showcase our holdings relevant to this month-long celebration of poetry. You'll find those, below:

Biopics
Feature films centering around the lives of poets


Films about Poets
Features films about poets and poetry


Documentaries
Documentaries about the lives of poets and the impact of poetry in the world

Media Studies
Titles from our collections relevant to poetry and poetics in cinema and media studies


Intersections between Music & Poetry
Selections of titles from our collections exploring the intersections between music and poetry


Poetry Collections by Musicians
Selected poetry collections by writers best-known as musicians, from our holdings

A selection of scholarly articles from a variety of journals, highlighting the intersections between media studies and poetry:

A selection of scholarly articles considering the relationship between poetry and music:

The Sounds of Women's History Month

In recognition of Women's* History Month in March, we have curated a series of playlists honoring the unforgettable contributions of women and femme-of-center nonbinary folks across the history of music, in genres such as folk, punk rock, heavy metal, and classical.

This first playlist is a retrospective of folk artists, beginning in the 60s and spanning all the way to 2021. This includes chart-topping and influential musicians such as Joan Baez and Nico and lesser-known artists such as Linda Perhacs and Elizabeth Cotton from the 20th century, as well as the next generation of folk and indie artists in the 21st century, such as Neko Case and Angel Olsen. To learn more about this music and the artists who have made folk an enduring musical tradition, check out some of the resources we used to inspire this playlist.

Resources for Further Exploration

*Note: Trans women are women. For the purposes of this feature, we have chosen to center feminine expression and embodiment, and so include contributions from artists and scholars who identify as women, whether cisgender or transgender, as well as nonbinary and genderqueer individuals who are femme, femme-of-center, or who identify with or perform femininity in some way. For more on these concepts, check out this article from the ACLU ("Trans Women are Women") or explore some of the resources from this feature on "The Metaphysics of Gender" from the Philosophy Research Guide. And, if you would like to explore the music of trans women in particular, check out our feature on "Transfeminine Worlds," from the Gender Studies Research Guide, which includes a playlist of songs by transfeminine musicians.

Beyond the Playlist
As with many of these national commemorations, one month is never enough to fully honor and celebrate the history and culture of marginalized communities, let alone heal the legacies (and ongoing reality) of harm and systemic oppression they've experienced. We recognize that resisting and rejecting misogyny and cisheteropatriarchy cannot be manifested simply through resource lists and guides, however important and well-intentioned, and that justice and liberation for women, expansively defined, and all who challenge and live outside of binary gender is the work of generations. We are, nevertheless, committed to doing what we can to work towards a different, more equitable and caring future.

If you'd like to engage more deeply with Women's History Month, units across the Libraries have created a number of interrelated resources and features to provide more holistic coverage of this commemoration. You'll find those, below:

Retrospective of punk acts, from its inception through recent times. Explore the sounds of femme artists in punk and the ways they evolved the genre. To learn more about the history of women and transgender punk rockers, check out the resources we used to curate this playlist below:

Retrospective of women and femme-of-center genderqueer rockers across the many subgenres that comprise rock & roll music and heavy metal, from the 80s to today. Explore how femme artists have shaped the sound of heavy music across its history. To learn more about the history of the women and transgender artists who have blown us away with their sound, check out the resources we used to curate this playlist below:

Retrospective of women and femmes in rap, from the 80s to today. Explore how femme artists have shaped the sound of hip hop across its evolution. To learn more about the history of women and transgender MCs, explore some of the resources we used to curate this playlist below:

Curated selection of contributions from women in classical music and jazz, from the beginning of the 20th century to today. To learn more about the contributions of women and transgender composers and instrumentalists who have contributed to these genres, enjoy some of the resources we used to put together this playlist below:

Further Reading/Listening

Too often in grand narratives (and playlists), many voices are left out. In this playlist, we've centered the voices of women of color across time and genre as they endeavor to speak out against and articulate the injustices and shortcomings of American democracy across history. In this music is both a ferocious condemnation of the various, interlocking systems of oppression that circumscribe the lives of so many and hope for a future defined by equality and justice. Explore how women of color have crafted political anthems that challenge American democracy to be accountable and inclusive. 

Further Reading/Listening

Books


Periodicals

Documentaries


Podcasts

Korea Remixed (Spring '22)

Inspired by and for the semester-long celebration of Korea Remixed, here is a playlist of forward-thinking sounds from Korean artists. K-Pop is a global phenomenon full of great artists and music, but there are many other sonic movements within the atmosphere of Korean music, and this playlist is an attempt to highlight musicians working in other genres and styles outside of the mainstream.

If you'd like to learn more about contemporary Korean music, explore some of the resources that helped inform this playlist below:

To enjoy musical selections from our archival holdings, pop over to this playlist of historical recordings provided by the Archives of Traditional Music (IU login required).

We've also highlighted a number of films, works of contemporary literature, scholarly texts on media studies, and podcasts from Korean and Korean-American thinkers and creators. You'll find these lists by clicking on the relevant tabs, in this section.

Fiction


Poetry


Nonfiction

Korean American Perspectives by the Council of Korean Americans
CKA launched the Korean American Perspectives podcast series with the purpose of exploring complex issues that shape the Korean American community and sharing inspirational life stories of Korean American leaders. In our past two seasons, we have highlighted key topics such as healthcare, civic engagement, and cultural identity, and have interviewed interesting figures from diverse backgrounds and fields within our community.

Feeling Asian by Youngmi Mayer & Brian Park
A podcast where two Asians talk about their feelings. After a lifetime of holding in their emotions (shoutout to Korean moms!), comedians Youngmi Mayer and Brian Park are ready to let them all out. Each week, Youngmi and Brian dive into topics that range from sex/dating to umm...not sex/dating stuff, and invite their interesting friends along the way. Who knew catharsis could look so Asian?

Awaken and Align by Laura Chung
Awaken and align the podcast provides you with guidance and support to help you awaken and align to your truth. Laura Chung, the host, realized through her own journey that living the life of your dreams means living in alignment with your highest self and activating your limitless potential.

LGBTQ+ Pride Month

In recognition of pride month throughout June, provided here are materials from the Media Studies collection on LGBTQ+ communities and their presence in the study. 

To learn more, explore some of the resources we used to help inspire this playlist.

Environmental Justice & Earth Day