May 22, 2024

Crosby, Goldman, Johnson-Young Present on Social Media Presentations of Weight, Diet, Nutrition

Associate Professors of Communication, Dr. Adria Goldman and Dr. Elizabeth Johnson-Young, and Assistant Professor of Communication, Dr. Emily Crosby, presented at the Eastern Communication Association’s Annual Conference in Cambridge, MA. Their panel, titled “Social Media and the Changing Current of Health Messaging and  Debates,” focused on research surrounding discussions of health, particularly related to diet and weight, in social media outlets. Joined by colleagues from Bunker Hill Community College and Norfolk State University, the panelists each took different topics and methodologies to explore this important area of research. 

Dr. Johnson-Young’s presentation, “Sugar, Snacks, and Weight: An Examination of Posts and Parent Reactions to the Challenges of Nutritional Health Norms on the Growing Intuitive Eaters Instagram” discussed a qualitative content analysis of a popular instagram influencer’s posts and user comments. The research is rooted both health behavior theory and non-evaluative and trust-based communication around food and nutrition. Preliminary findings show a variety of themes regarding reactions to the influencer’s, Dr. Taylor Arnold, posts from anger and resistance to relief and excitement.

Dr. Goldman’s research presentation, titled “#SocialSupport: Examining the Informative and Emotional Functions of Bariatric Surgery Support Groups on Facebook” investigates the social support functions of bariatric surgery support groups. Taking a qualitative thematic analysis, this research investigates the instrumental and emotional functions identified in social support research, applying these to the specific support needs demonstrated in the literature and in the groups for bariatric surgery.

Dr. Crosby’s presentation, titled “The Digital Cult of Thinness: Critically Engaging Ozempic “Success Stories” on Social Media,” investigates the discourse surrounding Ozempic in social media platforms. Employing feminist rhetorical criticism informed by visual rhetoric scholarship, Dr. Crosby analyzes posts and commentary to identify themes and conventions that emerge from Ozempic weight loss “success stories” on social media. The aim of this research is to contribute to communication scholarship by defining a digital Cult of Thinness based on current social media conventions that promote injectable weight loss drugs for women.

UMW Faculty Members Receive VIVA Open Grant Awards

A trio of UMW faculty members has received VIVA Open Grants for adopting, adapting and creating open and affordable course materials from the Virtual Library of Virginia that can be made available to students at little or no cost. These grants work to save students money on expensive textbooks and help professors enhance the knowledge and […]

Johnson-Young Presents on Birth Trauma Communication

Assistant Professor of Communication Elizabeth Johnson-Young

Associate Professor of Communication Elizabeth Johnson-Young

Associate Professor of Communication Elizabeth Johnson-Young presented her paper, “Birth, Trauma, and Communicating Maternal Health” at the annual conference of the Eastern Communication Association in Baltimore, Maryland. The paper was presented during a panel hosted by the Health Communication division focused on maternal and reproductive health. The paper focused on birth choices, experiences, and perceptions of traumatic or challenging birth experiences. Maternal and postpartum health is a topic of importance in the United States, given increasing maternal mortality rates (MacDorman, Declercg, Cabral, & Morton, 2016), recognition of factors involved in postpartum depression and anxiety, and increasing rates of inductions and cesarean births (c-sections) despite the risks that come with them (Betran et al., 2018; Sandall et al., 2018). Birth trauma and psychological responses to birth trauma most often refer to situations in which the mother’s or child’s life is put at risk (i.e. NIH, 2013); however, a simple search on social and popular media reveals a host of other experiences women may have that they define as traumatic, the consequences of which can impact their mental health, who they trust when it comes to their maternal healthcare, and future decisions regarding birth. The project addressed the research question: What communication choices and strategies do women use after a negative birth experience? Using in-depth, semi-structured interviews of women who personally define their birth experience as difficult or traumatic, the paper discussed the potential consequences of listening, language, and support.

 

Assistant Professor of Communication Adria Goldman, and Professor of Communication and Communication and Digital Studies Department Chair Anand Rao also presented at the conference on March 30, 2023. Their panel, Collaborative Team-Based and Experiential Learning as a Path to Student Innovation in Communication, which included Johnson-Young, explored examples and lessons from team-based collaborative learning experiences from multiple institutions. During the interactive discussion, panel members brought expertise from their classrooms and roles in their school that demonstrated purposeful collaborative learning. In each of the cases, a focus on student engagement with one another and the outside community was key, as students learned to situate themselves as communication scholars and practitioners. UMW presenters shared examples and ideas from Visual Rhetoric, Senior Seminar in Digital Rhetoric, and Small Group Communication. Panel members from other institutes presented projects from courses such as Public Relations and Game Design.

 

Goldman Interviewed: ‘More Than a Pretty Face’

Assistant Professor of Communication Adria Goldman

Assistant Professor of Communication Adria Goldman

Assistant Professor of Communication Adria Goldman was interviewed for an article in Australia entitled, More than a pretty face: Who wins and who loses when beauty trends celebrate cosmetically altered looks that are ethnic, but not too ethnic. 

Goldman says the term “Blackfishing” describes “an act of cultural appropriation where someone non-Black tries to present themselves as Black.”That could be through darkening their skin, adopting an Afro-centric hairstyle, or getting a more voluptuous shape, through photo editing or even butt augmentation.“Oftentimes [it’s] for profit or some other personal gain,” she says.Blackfishing is a criticism that’s been levelled at the Kardashians, and other celebrities including Australian singer Iggy Azalea, British singer Rita Ora and American singer Ariana Grande.Some accused of Blackfishing or of cultural appropriation have counter argued that in fact they are enacting cultural “appreciation,” Dr. Goldman says. Read more.

Keeping Up With the Kardashians: 8 ways one family became a hot topic (BBC News; Earth Info Now; MSN)

‘J-term’ Helps Students Engage, Gain Credits

College students often spend the final weeks of winter break watching movies, playing video games and writing résumés for jobs and internships. Now, a University of Mary Washington offering called the January-term, or “J-term,” allows them to earn college credits for these and other types of activities. Before UMW’s spring semester begins – remotely on […]

‘J-term’ Helps Students Engage, Gain Credits

College students often spend the final weeks of winter break watching movies, playing video games and writing résumés for jobs and internships. Now, a University of Mary Washington offering called the January-term, or “J-term,” allows them to earn college credits for these and other types of activities. Before UMW’s spring semester begins – remotely on […]

Communication Faculty Present Research on the CW’s ‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’ at National Conference

NCA 2020 Presentation Panel

Adria Goldman, Emily Crosby, and Elizabeth Johnson-Young presented a panel at the National Communication Association’s virtual conference. The paper session, “You Can’t Call Them Crazy”: Framing and Considerations of Gender, Sexuality, and Mental Health in “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” shared the panelists’ research from a variety of lenses and methodologies regarding the messaging and impact of the CW musical-comedy television series that ran from 2015-2019. 

Johnson-Young’s presentation, “The Situation is a Lot More Nuanced Than That:” A Qualitative Analysis of Women’s Mental Health in the Humor and Music of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” investigated the ways in which the show’s music and humor, particularly feminist humor, was used throughout the series to communicate and challenge traditional media messaging of mental health and gender biases in health. Goldman’s presentation, The Awkward Revolution: A Framing Analysis of Awkwardness, Humor, and Sexuality in Rachel Bloom’s “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” explored how humor and music were used as rhetorical devices to present new representations of women’s sexuality, while also challenging existing, problematic narratives. Crosby’s presentation, “Type A Ambition”: Postfeminist Tropes in “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” explored the postfeminist themes in contemporary media that often unfavorably frame ambitious women as personally unfulfilled and unlikable. Deeper rhetorical analysis reveals that the series pushes back against postfeminist tropes, providing a more nuanced depiction of complicated characters who subvert postfeminist pitfalls that oversimplify “having it all.”

Goldman Quoted in Atlanta Journal-Constitution Opinion Piece

Assistant Professor of Communication Adria Goldman

Adria Goldman, Assistant Professor of Communication, was recently quoted multiple times as an expert in African American women and popular culture in the opinion piece “Is Gabrielle Union’s truth really that different from Julianne Hough’s?” in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
https://www.ajc.com/lifestyles/gabrielle-union-truth-really-that-different-from-julianne-hough/apuKsK3NXBpXvrPqUKayVJ/

OPINION: Is Gabrielle Union’s truth really that different from Julianne Hough’s? (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)