Instructor: Julie Tilsen, MA, LP, PhD

From sexually explicit TV shows and films, to violent video games and song lyrics, to commodification of youth as a market niche, popular media culture has established itself as a powerful influence. Often, the response to youth’s embrace of pop culture ranges from overly simplistic notions about teenage rebellion to reactions on the order of moral panic. In practice, therapists often think of discussions about pop culture only as a practice of “joining.” In this workshop, Theoretical and conversational resources from cultural studies methodologies will be presented that afford youth and therapists opportunities to engage in meaningful conversations about pop culture. The presentation will take a both/and look at pop culture, viewing it as a potential site for meaning making and identity construction as well as a source of reinforcement of limiting identity conclusions. Youth’s engagement with pop culture will be considered within the contexts of race, class, gender and sexuality. Cultural studies methodologies will be presented as therapeutic resources that afford opportunities to engage in productive conversations about pop culture with youth. Workshop participants will: 1)Reflect on and consider their relationships with pop culture, historically, in the present, and in the future, 2) Learn cultural studies methodologies that engage youth in therapeutic conversations about pop culture and that enhance media literacy including analysis of political economy, textual analysis, meaning making, and textual poaching, 3) Apply cultural studies methodologies to therapeutic conversations.

3 CEUs