"Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Beauty and the Beast, and Disney’s commodification of feminism: A political economic analysis" (2018)
Koushik, K., & Reed, A.

This paper seeks to explore the strategies Hollywood utilizes to capitalize on feminist social movements through replacing hegemonic male characters with female ones or updating traditional stories through a more “feminist” retelling. By analyzing both 2017’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Beauty and the Beast as representative of this corporate trend, we critique the ways in which these pseudo-feminist texts not only contribute little to the social conversation surrounding the evolving roles of women and their representations in media through the lenses of critical political economy, feminist political economy, and feminist film criticism. We conclude that creating “feminist” reimaginings of classic narratives ultimately serves to uphold the existing economic structures that maintain social and financial capital within the largest Hollywood studios. Thus, little to no social progress is made through the creation of these retellings.

"Spreading the Good News: Analyzing Socially Shared Inspirational News Content" (2018)
Ji, Q., Raney, A. A., Janicke-Bowles, S. H., Dale, K. R., Oliver, M. B., Reed, A., Seibert, J. M., Raney, A. A.

Past research indicates that people often share awe-inspiring news online. However, little is known about the content of those stories. In this study, more broadly defined “inspirational” articles shared through The New York Times website over a 6-month period were analyzed, with the goals of describing the content and identifying characteristics that might predict inspirationality and measures of retransmission. The results provided a snapshot of content found within inspirational news stories; they also revealed that self-transcendent language use predicted the inspirationality of a news story, as well as how long an article appeared on a most shared list.

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