TalkBU: Taylor Swift, zombies and why popular culture matters in Higher Education.

Taylor Swift, zombies and why popular culture matters in Higher Education.

Talk BU Live returns to Dylan’s Bar with this live talk from Dr Sam Goodman on Tuesday 29 September 2015 at 5:30pm.

The modern university is a troubled place. Under the pressure of reduced government funding and the rising expectations that come with increased student fees, the emphasis in contemporary media is on degrees that lead directly to a career.

As a result humanities subjects, such as English Literature and cultural studies, have come under criticism for being too broad, too wide reaching. It has been suggested that these degrees should focus solely on those subjects and skills that will ‘guarantee’ employment – a return to the so-called classics of Shakespeare and Dickens.

This decision would limit the texts and scope of the humanities and undermine the ability of scholars to pursue research, ultimately damaging the student experience in the process.

Using high-profile examples from contemporary popular culture, such as Taylor Swift, and the rise of the Zombie in video games, film and TV, BU’s Dr Sam Goodman will argue that the value of diverse humanities and the importance of academic freedom has never been greater.

About Dr Sam Goodman

Sam lectures in linguistics at BU and his research interests include 20th Century literature with a broad focus on identity, medicine, notions of Englishness and Empire, and post-World War 2 popular culture. This year he was selected as a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Thinker and has recently published a book on spy novels, entitled “British Spy Fiction & the End of Empire”.

About Talk BU Live

Talk BU Live is a series of free on-campus events designed to get people talking and thinking. Talks are no more than 20 minutes long and open to all students and staff at BU.

You can get involved by tweeting #TalkBU or find out more by contacting the team or visiting the Talk BU page on the website.