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Cultural Theory

Cultural theory seeks to understand the relationships between individuals, environments, institutions and everyday activities. Paying close attention to power dynamics in our everyday lives, cultural theory helps shed light on how social and material conditions frame our experiences. Our CDMS researchers explore these dynamics in relation to communication technologies, cultures and subcultures, media and popular culture.

Affiliated faculty



  • Braithwaite, A. (2015). Bon Cop, Bad Cop: Fighting Crime Across the Two Solitudes. In Screening Justice: Canadian Crime Films and Society. Eds. Steven Kohn, Sonia Bookman, and Pauline Greenhill. Fernwood Publishing.
  • Braithwaite, A. (2015). ‘Buckle up, bitches. Nothing is as it seems’: Gothic conventions in Pretty Little Liars. 21:5.
  • Genosko, G. (2013). When Technocultures Collide: Innovation from Below and the Struggle for Autonomy. Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press.
  • Hochheimer, J., Huffman, T., & Lauricella, S. (in press, 2015). The emerging field of spiritual communication studies. In In De Souza, M., Bone, J., & Watson, J. (Eds). Contemporary spirituality across disciplines: Understandings, applications and practices. Springer.
  • Lauricella, S. (2015, March). Spiritual hygiene in modern times: An investigation of media coverage of meditation from 1979-2014. Paper presented at the annual meeting of Spirituality in the Twenty-First Century, Lisbon, Portugal.
  • Braithwaite, A. (2014). Streets Behind: Nostalgia in Community. 21:1.
  • Lauricella, S. (2014). Judging by the way animals are treated: Gandhi as a manifestation of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. Gandhi Marg, 35(4), 655-674.
  • Lauricella, S. (2014). Mindfulness meditation with undergraduates in face-to-face and digital practice: A formative analysis. Mindfulness, 5(6), 682-688.  doi: 10.1007/s12671-013-0222-x.


  • Lauricella, S. (2013). Performing spirituality: Lil’ Wayne’s letters from a New York jail. Urban God Talk: Rap, Religion and a Spirituality of Hip Hop. Andre Johnson, Ed. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.
  • Baesler, E. J. & Lauricella, S. (2013). Teach peace! Assessing instruction of the nonviolent communication and peace course. Journal of Peace Education. doi: 10.1080/17400201.2013.777899.


  • Brown, D., Lauricella, S., Zaidi, A. & Douai, A. (2012). Consuming television crime drama: A uses and gratifications approach. American Communication Journal, 14(1). 
  • Genosko, G. (2012). Remodelling Communication: From WWII to the WWW. Toronto Studies in Semiotics and Communication. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
  • Lauricella, S. & Kyereme, S. (2012). A religious hustle: T.I. and Jay-Z’s lyrical narratives from “the trap” to the spiritual. Journal of Religion and Society, 14. 
  • Lauricella, S. & Alexander, M. (2012). Voice from Rikers: Spirituality in hip hop artist Lil’ Wayne’s prison blog. Journal of Religion and Popular Culture, 24(1). doi:10.3138/jrpc.24.1.15
  • Lauricella, S. (2012). The lifetime of prayer: A review of literature on prayer throughout the life course. Journal of Communication and Religion, 35(3), 209-236.


  • Baesler, E. J., Lindvall, T., & Lauricella, S. (2011). Assessing predictions of Relational Prayer Theory II: Media and interpersonal inputs, public and private prayer processes, and spiritual health. Southern Communication Journal, 76(3), 191-209. doi: 10.1080/10417940903474438.
  • Braithwaite, A. (2011). It’s the beast thing’: Victimization, Violence, and Popular Masculine Crises.” Feminist Media Studies. 11:4.
  • Lauricella, S. (2011). Making sense of spiritual media: An audience study of The Secret DVD, book, and website. Nebula, 8(1).