Gemma Commane

Senior Lecturer

Dr Gemma Commane is a Senior Lecturer in Media and Communication. Broadly the areas of her expertise span the fields of media and cultural studies and gender and sexuality. Her research interests focus on contemporary cultural studies, gender and sexuality, queer studies, sexual economies and entrepreneurship, dangerous femininities and ethnography. She has published in peer-reviewed journals and edited collections (see details here). She is one of the founding members of Bean Flicks Birmingham’s only queer and ethical feminist porn festival.

In her first book ‘Bad Girls, Dirty Bodies: Sex, Performance and Safe Femininity’ (Bloomsbury 2020), Gemma critically explores the social, sexual and political significance of women who are labelled ‘bad’, sluts or dirty. Through a variety of case studies drawn from qualitative and original ethnographic research, she argues that ‘Bad Girls’ disrupt heterosexual normativity and contribute new embodied knowledge. From neo-burlesque, sex-positive and queer performance art, to explicit entertainment and areas of popular culture; she situates ‘bad’ women as sites of power, possibility and success. The book is available from Bloomsbury.

Gemma is a reviewer for the Journal of Youth Studies, SAGE Open, YOUNG Nordic Journal of Youth Research, SQS-Journal (Finland Queer Studies Association Journal), and Health, Risk & Society. Gemma has also reviewed books, including a review of Katrien Jacobs’ book ‘The afterglow of women’s pornography in post-digital china,’ for Sexualities. She is also a Fellow of the Higher Education Authority, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA) and a member of MeCCSA and the European Communication Research and Education Association (ECREA).




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