FIMS Profile

Jonathan Burston
Associate Professor (On Leave) 

FIMS & Nursing Building Room 4035
Phone: 519-661-2111 x88511

University of Western Ontario
London, Ontario, Canada N6A 5B7
Fax: 519-661-3506

I teach courses on popular music, labour in entertainment capitalism, media and globalization, and the social uses of spectacle in contemporary life. These include MIT 2100 (The Political Economy of Media) , MIT 3132 (The Political Economy of the Entertainment Industries), and MIT 3352 (Music, Media and Globalization). At the graduate level, I teach courses both in Media Studies and in FIMS' joint MA in Popular Music and Culture with the Faculty of Music. Courses include MS 9100 (Interdisciplinary Foundations of Media Theory), MS 9781 (The Social Uses of Spectacle), and PMC 9761 (Space, Place, Music). I am on sabbatical in 2015-16.

Research Interests
My research interests span the same range of topics. They also include, as a subset, the study of performing bodies in digital space and time and, as a super-set, the military-industrial-media complex. So, for instance, I've written about the way that 'synthespianism' in Siliwood (Hollywood + Silicon Valley) is blurring boundaries between digital and human actors. Implications big and small are addressed in "War and entertainment: New research priorities in an age of cyber-patriotism," in Daya Thussu and Des Freedman, eds., War and the Media: Reporting Conflict 24/7 (London: Sage, 2003), in "Synthespians among us: Re-thinking the actor in media work and media theory," in James Curran and David Morley, eds., Media and Cultural Theory (London: Routledge 2006), and in “The Slippery Slopes of ‘Soft Power’: Entertainment Labor, International Relations, and the Military Industrial Media Complex," in Vicki Mayer, ed., International Handbook of Media Studies: Media Production (Oxford: Blackwell, 2013). Recent writing on media capitalism's impact on the Broadway musical, another interest of mine, can be found in "Recombinant Broadway," Continuum 23/2: 159-169 (2009).