Michael Serazio, Ph.D., assistant professor of communication at Fairfield University, has been appointed deputy director of Open VISIONS Forum, Fairfield’s signature lecture series that annually features eminent opinion-makers, artists, authors, learned contributors to the humanities and sciences, and civic and political commentators. In this new role, Dr. Serazio will be assisting with main stage events of Fairfield University’s signature OVF lecture series, while also collaborating with faculty colleagues in facilitating effective special events. The successful pilot of last year’s Open VISIONS Forum “Espresso” allowed the series to expand into wider and deeper academic and community programs. Dr. Serazio’s expertise will enable these smaller, more flexibly designed lectures to gain larger audiences and visibility while continuing OVF’s efforts to promote the ‘life of the mind’ for multi-generational audiences.
“Dr. Serazio’s exceptional arsenal of intellectual and creative talents will contribute to OVF’s platform serving our students, faculty, and a growing community audience of lifelong learners,” said Philip Eliasoph, Ph.D., Founder, Moderator and Director of Open VISIONS Forum and Professor of Art History. “As the series grows in prestige, bringing leading international diplomats, opinion-makers, authors, artists, and humanitarians to campus, he is uniquely qualified to promote our expanding program.”
“I couldn’t be more thrilled to join the Open VISIONS Forum team,” says Dr. Serazio. “One of the most vital things a university can do is to keep the wider community engaged in the big social, cultural, and political questions of our time, and OVF has long performed that role skillfully by bringing scintillating speakers and eager audiences to our campus, and with Espresso, we hope to continue that tradition in dynamic ways.”
Dr. Serazio’s research, writing, and teaching interests include popular culture, advertising, politics, and new media. In his first book,Your Ad Here: The Cool Sell of Guerrilla Marketing (NYU Press, 2013), Dr. Serazio investigates the proliferation of brands into pop culture content, social patterns, and digital platforms book, amid a major transformation of the advertising and media industries, and establishes his role at the epicenter of a new breed of scholars deconstructing the stealth commercial measures of the 21st century. In his articles and timely postings in The Atlantic, The Nation, and Bloomberg View, appearances on NPR, as well as in academic journals, he both exposes and exploits the matrix of digital media with its subtle, sophisticated orchestration of our contemporary lives in ways both consumerist and political. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication, holds a B.A. in Communication from the University of San Francisco, and an M.S. in Journalism from Columbia University.
Soon after joining the Fairfield University faculty in fall 2010, Dr. Serazio demonstrated his keen interest in OVF and has twice been invited as a faculty respondent for on-stage dialogues with the series’ distinguished guests. “As one of our most productive junior faculty, he is on the cutting edge of a new generation of media critics, endowed with impeccable scholarly credentials but layered with a cool, nervy, critical engagement with the impersonal forces of corporate media and Big Data dehumanization,” said Dr. Eliasoph. “It takes a really intuitive sense of ‘connectivity’ to our current – sometimes wild, often confusing, always impactful – cultural landscape. He has his mind and spirit right on the pulse of our media environment – and we will all be enlightened with his presence.”
Dr. Serazio notes in a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed: “Guerrilla advertising is slowly disappearing from view even as it becomes more ubiquitous than ever. We’re seeing a new breed of ‘hidden persuaders’ optimized for 21-century media content, social patterns, and digital platforms. This is advertising that markets without selling and shows without telling. Consumers would do well to pay closer attention to what’s being hidden in plain sight.”
The OVF bar was set high from the start, with Philippe de Montebello, then Director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, as its inaugural speaker in September 1997. This season is just as suitably represented by a series that includes CBS News’ Steve Kroft (Sept. 16); actress America Ferrera of “Ugly Betty” fame in the Eighth Annual Students Forum (Oct. 7); Damien Echols and Lorri Davis in the Annual Jacoby-Lunin Humanitarian Lectureship (Nov. 18); The New York Times’ A.O. Scott (Jan. 27, 2014); Pulitzer Prize winner Isabel Wilkerson (Feb. 11); human rights activist Ronan Farrow (March 18); and Dr. Spencer Wells, Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society (April 10). Lectures take place in the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts. For further information, call (203) 254-4010 or 1-877-278-7396, or visit www.quickcenter.com.
The Department of Communication and Career Planning Center hosted the 2013 “Careers in Communication Panel” this past Monday night in the Kelley Center Presentation Room. David Gudelunas moderated the event, which was assembled and organized by Sallyanne Ryan and Sue Quinlivan. Distinguished panelists and recent alums included: Courtney Cunningham (’10), Advertising Sales Planner for NBCUniversal-Sprout; Caitlin Gallagher (’09), Merchant Assistant for Bloomingdale’s and Bloomingdales.com; Ali Goldberg (’11), Public Relations Specialist for Subway World Headquarters; Brenna Jordan (’07), Talent Acquisition Specialist for Legg Mason Global Asset Management; and Brendan Monahan (’10), News Reporter at abc40-TV and New England Cable News. We thank these participants for sharing their time and wisdom with a full house of undergraduates!
Don’t miss the second half of our department’s faculty research presentations! Last fall, Dr. Ryan, Dr. Gudelunas, Dr. Pagano, and Dr. Zhang gave a fascinating talk about their ongoing work – this spring, we continue with the rest of the department…
Be sure to be there on Thursday, April 4 at 8:00 pm:
More than 30 recent alums and students gathered in midtown Manhattan at the Park Avenue Tavern last night to join Dr. David Gudelunas in celebrating the annual social for graduates and current seniors involved in the internship program.
Last summer, Hurricane Irene brought danger and destruction to the shores of Connecticut – will the town of Fairfield be prepared when disaster strikes again? That’s the topic for a breakfast ethics panel cosponsored by Fairfield University’s Program in Applied Ethics and The Rotary Club of Fairfield. Our own Dr. Colleen Arendt, assistant professor of communication, will join a group of fire and police officials to discuss Fairfield’s emergency preparedness. Don’t miss this important event, which is free and open to the public, though seating is limited. Contact David P. Schmidt, Ph.D., director of Fairfield’s Program in Applied Ethics, at (203)254-4000 (x2837) or email@example.com if you plan to attend.
See also: http://www.fairfield.edu/cas/cas_news.html?id=3391
It was standing room only in CNS15 when Associate Professor Qin Zhang led a panel of faculty discussing Amy Chua’s controversial Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother and the stereotype of “extreme” parenting in Chinese families. In pursuit of academic excellence for her children, Chua advocates unceasing – even severe – discipline, work ethic, and high standards.
What is the experience of media consumption in everyday Russian life? On Wednesday, February 29th, at noon, Inna Pronicheva will give her audience a glimpse of Russian audiences: What role does television play in family life? How does content differ from our American expectations? What values are embedded in Russian media? How do Russians use TV and the internet to gratify their needs and what limitations remain in terms of access and opportunity? And how is the next generation of Russian youth adapting to the new media environment?
At an important moment in the history and politics of Russia – not to mention amidst ongoing issues of free speech – Pronicheva’s insight arrives at an opportune time. She is currently a Fulbright Russian Language Teaching Assistant at Fairfield and will be sharing her expertise with students and faculty through “The Russian Hours,” a series dedicated to various aspects of Russian culture. The presentations are made with the support of the Department of Foreign Language and Literatures, the Russian and East European Studies Program, and Professor Elena Syssoeva. Don’t miss this intriguing talk!
Wednesday, February 29th @ 12nooon: Bannow 137