PhD and a Hobby

Okay, I doubt I’m going to be on this site much soon…not in the way I used to!

So I start a PhD soon and I’ve decided to not do live performance this year.

I’ll be corralling my mental health rants away from this blog and into structured work on my other project The Deadline – where you will see stuff like this –

And here will BE ALL SATIRE commentary…



So what is the PhD on?

Well…here’s some detail! It’s a PhD in Political and Social Sciences and I have a anthropology background – so it will combine three approaches to look at…

WARNING: Nerd Speak…

The current working research question is “You can’t laugh at that! The Politics of Laughter: Does mainstream overidentification Australian political satire challenge the social status quo?” 

If you are a white Australian, there is a strong possibility you will have heard the expression “we avoid talking about religion and politics” at social functions. 

Australian political identity is changing and Australians are more aware of issues of structural inequality than ever before but Australian satire is tame in comparison in terms of the political status quo (Cothren and Phiddian 2019; Milner Davis and Foyle 2017:3).  Political satire in Australia has seen a coming and going of comedy skit and variety shows that had political undertones or intentions.  These mainstream representations had large followings but may not have much impact as contemporary online efforts to reach the less politically engaged Australian public (Cothren and Phiddian 2019; O’Connor 2017).  This research will examine the part recent changes to political overidentification satire production may have played in the raising of Australian political consciousness or if it continues to maintain the status quo of Australian satire.  

The increase in use of social media to market and promote and distribute political satire of smaller time framed, more easily digested satire, may have increased the public uptake of political satire.  The popularity of online political impersonators and the success of Sammy J’s Government Coach and The Juice Media’s Honest Government Adverts appear, anecdotally, to access the politically disengaged more than past political comedy examples.  This participatory ethnographic research aims to examine some of the impact of these more compact political messages of under five minutes, on Australian’s potentially, shorter political attention spans. 

So that’s about it! And references…for the nerds…

Cothren, A. and R. Phiddian (2019).  Friday essay: why is Australian satire so rarely risky? The Conversation.

Milner Davis, J. and Foyle, L.  (2017), The Satirist, the Larrikin and the Politician: An Australian Perspective on Satire and Politics.  In Milner Davis, J.  (Ed.), Satire and Politics: The Interplay of Heritage and Practice

O’Connor, A. (2017). The Effects of Satire: Exploring Its Impact on Political Candidate Evaluation. In: Milner Davis J. (ed), Satire and Politics: The Interplay of Heritage and Practice Satire and Politics.

And to finish – I AM EXCITED!

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