New article on interactivity & postfeminism

I've got a new scholarly publication in Feminist Media Studies, "The Postfeminist User: Feminism and media theory in two interactive media properties." Here's the abstract:

This paper is part of a preliminary investigation toward a postfeminist analysis of “the user.” It critically examines the pervasive liberatory rhetoric of interactivity through situating it within a widespread cultural context also rife with liberatory rhetoric: postfeminism. Two media properties, heavily marketed for interactivity, are examined: the first three films of the Final Destination film series and the reality television program Big Brother (US). I situate each as postfeminist texts, and then analyze their interactivity through this lens, demonstrating the utility of applying postfeminism to technology study. Following the feminist method of analyzing popular texts as modes of understanding feminine ideals, thereby articulating contours of a feminine subject position, I argue that analyses of postfeminist culture are productive broadly applied to cultural products, such as interactive media, augmenting feminist media theory. To understand ideals of technological usership, one must understand the culture in which they are embedded. Therefore, articulating the contours of the user as a subject position benefits from understanding postfeminist cultural sensibilities. Through this analysis, I describe the user, contrary to much new media theorizing, as exhibiting an illusory rhetoric of agency, hyperembodiment suffused with temporality and mobility, and an interactivity better understood as ongoing assessment and adjustment.

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