Dr. Jonathan Lupo: In His Own Words

With a new semester well on its way, Bradley’s back porch is once more a busy place. It will be my privilege in the year ahead to introduce various colleagues and students and let them speak about the things that matter to them. Meet Dr. Jonathan Lupo who joined our Department last year after establishing his teaching and scholarly career in the Department of Communication at Colorado State University. -GB

Dr. Jonathan Lupo

Dr. Jonathan Lupo

One of the perks of writing and teaching about movies, television, and other aspects of popular culture is that it’s a perfect opening to discuss what people are watching, reading, and listening to and what they think about it. Whether it’s a “did you see that?” (the controversial performance of Miley Cyrus at the Video Music Awards) or “you must see that” (all of Breaking Bad and Mad Men), these are conversations I love to have. Since joining the English department last year, I’ve been lucky to have many of them – spirited discussions in class, lively exchanges with students in my office, and illuminating talks with colleagues in the halls of Bradley and over lunch in the Coffee Shop.

For me, these conversations are not simply commentary on the popular or ephemeral but fascinating windows into how people make sense of themselves and the world around them, made even more complex as they occur in a media-saturated society such as ours. What people are talking about (or not), and more importantly, how they are talking about it, is at the heart of why I study communication. The National Communication Association (the academic organization for the field) defines the field of communication as “focus[ing] on how people use messages to generate meanings within and across various contexts, cultures, channels, and media." While these concerns are hardly the sole province of Communication Studies, I am proud to be part of a discipline that foregrounds them.

While it’s clear that I’m personally most interested in the mediated aspects of communication, this is only one facet of the forms of symbolic expression by which we structure ourselves and our world. As scholars and teachers of communication, we’re also interested in how communication works between individuals, groups, families and organizations. We’re interested in the rhetoric of media images and sounds. We’re interested in the politics of representation. We’re interested in the way that language and its use helps us form identity and community.

Ultimately, I am gratified to be part of a department and College that values the study of communication as a key feature of the liberal arts educational experience. My colleague Chani Marchiselli, who joined the department faculty with me last year, says it best: “As teachers, this liberal arts orientation takes shape first in learning what communication strategies, forms and uses of media communication best facilitate democratic participation in public culture. So, we’re invested in helping students to become articulate citizens in the immediate community and in the world. Also, as a liberal art, communication means to help you live well – to help you develop communication competencies that lead to richer and more pleasurable lives.”

For certain, no matter our majors or fields, we all want our words to have weight. We all want our interactions – personal and professional – to be meaningful. We all want to be mindful consumers of messages, too – to be engaged and inspired but also to be skeptical (without being cynical). Above all, no one wants to be misunderstood. Just ask Miley.

  • yougesh

    Many of CNN's Vape Mail regular news programs will be broadcast Vapemail live from Saint Anselm professional arabic translation College beginning Sunday, translate docs June 3 through Wednesday, June 6. The Democrats debate on Sunday, June 3, followed on Tuesday, June 5 by the Republicans. Stay tuned to CNN for pre-debate and post-debate analysis. translate documents

  • Paul Shaw

    Cinemabox HD s the one app I would refer to even my parents. The app is simple to use, is comfortable to navigate thogh and is also very efficient at what it does. What it does is very well known.
    Not so well known is the fact that the app is free and secure Cinema Box Apk Download Free

  • markhelly

    The peoples are nowadays more interested in online jobs and offline data
    entry jobs without investment due to low employment ration and also for
    earning some extra money in their spare time, so I have created this
    blog to offer peoples 100% genuine and legitimate online jobs and
    offline jobs without investment I also have some form filling jobs and
    ad posting jobs work if you want to do and without investment.http://www.onlinejoboffer.net