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Faculty | Claire Sisco King

Associate Professor

Office: 220L Edgehill
(1801 Edgehill Ave)
Phone: 615-322-8668

Office Hours

Curriculum Vitae

CLAIRE SISCO KING is Associate Professor of Communication Studies and Chair of the Cinema and Media Arts program. She is a scholar of media and visual culture, with a particular emphasis on the study of gender and sexuality. Her book, Washed in Blood: Male Sacrifice, Trauma, and the Cinema (Rutgers University, 2011), which was named an Outstanding Book of the Year in 2013 by Critical Cultural Studies division of the National Communication Association, addresses the intersections between cinematic violence, masculinity, and discourses of civic identity. Her work has been published in numerous journals in the fields of communication and media studies, and she is currently writing a new book on celebrity culture, gender, and race. King is the Editor of Women’s Studies in Communication, a peer-reviewed, feminist journal addressing the relationships between communication and gender.


B.A. Davidson College, 1999

M.A., Ph.D. Indiana University, 2001, 2006

Typical Courses

Rhetoric of Mass Media
Cultural Rhetorics of Film
Rhetoric, Culture, & Critique
Communicating Gender

Representative Publications

“‘If It’s in A Word’: Intersectional Feminism, Precarity, and The Babadook,” The Popular Culture Studies Journal 6.2-3 (November 2018): 166-189.

Washed in Blood: Male Sacrifice, Trauma, and the Cinema, Rutgers University Press, December 2011
*Winner, 2013 Book of the Year, National Communication Association, Critical/Cultural Studies Division

“American Queerer: Norman Rockwell and the Art of Queer Feminist Critique,” Women’s Studies in Communication 39.2 (2016): 157-176.

(with Vanessa B. Beasley) “Running on Screen While Black: Representations of Black Candidates in U.S. Film and Television,” Quarterly Journal of Speech 103.1-2 (2017): 117-135.

“Hitching Wagons to Stars: Celebrity, Metonymy, Hegemony, and the Case of Will Smith,” Communication and Critical Cultural Studies 14.1 (2017): 83-102.

(with Isaac N. West) “This Could Be the Place: Queer Acceptance in Lars and the Real Girl,” QED: A Journal in GLBTQ Worldmaking 1.3 (Fall 2014), 59-84.

“A Single Man and a Tragic Woman: Gender Politics and the Fag Hag”, Feminist Media Studies 14.2 (May 2014)
*Winner Outstanding Article of the Year, 2014 Visual Communication Division, National Communication Association

(with Joshua Gunn) “On a Violence Unseen: The Womanly Object and Sacrificed Man,” Quarterly Journal of Speech 99.2 (May 2013): 200-208.

“Car Crashes and Crosses to Bear: Trauma and Masculinity in Seven Pounds,” Journal of the Northwest Communication Association 40.1 (Winter 2012): 13-40, lead article

“Unqueering Horror: Hellbent and the Policing of the ‘Gay Slasher,’” Western Journal of Communication, 74.3 (July-September 2010): 249-268.

“The Man Inside: Trauma, Gender, and the Nation in The Brave One,” Critical Studies in Media Communication, 27. 2 (June 2010): 111-130, lead article.

“It Cuts Both Ways: Fight Club, Masculinity, and Abject-Hegemony,” Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, 6. 4 (December 2009): 366-385.

“Rogue Waves, Remakes and Resurrections: Allegorical Displacement and Screen Memory in Poseidon,” Quarterly Journal of Speech, 94. 2 (November 2008): 430-454.

“Acting Up and Sounding Off: Sacrifice and Performativity in Alice, Sweet Alice,” Text and Performance Quarterly, 27. 2 (April 2007): 124-142.

Selected Honors and Awards

New Investigator Award, Rhetoric and Communication Theory Division, National Communication Association, 2012

Jeffrey Nordhaus Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in the Humanities, College of
Arts and Science, Vanderbilt University, 2011

Curb Creative Campus Innovation Grant, Vanderbilt University, 2011

Ellen Gregg Ingalls Award for Excellence in Classroom Teaching, Vanderbilt University, 2010

Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities Fellowship, Vanderbilt University, 2008-9

Vanderbilt University Venture Fund Grant, May 2008

Dissertation Fellowship, American Association of University Women, 2005-2006

Future Faculty Teaching Fellowship, Indiana University, 2003-4

Chancellor’s Fellowship, Indiana University, 1999-2004