Call for Chapters for Book Proposal

The editors are seeking chapter proposals for a collection of essays that examine positive, healthy, and accurate portrayals of mental illness in entertainment media.

Proposed Title: Quieting the Madness: Entertainment Media’s Shift into More Accurate Depictions of Mental Illness

Editors: Malynnda A. Johnson (Indiana State University) and Christopher J. Olson (University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee)

Purpose: From mad men to hysterical women to crazed villains, negative depictions of mental illness recur throughout entertainment media. Thus, unsurprisingly, a wealth of research has focused on the adverse aspects of these portrayals. Yet viewers and producers have recently started to push back against these inaccurate depictions and call for more accurate narratives. As a result, several movies and television shows have shifted how they frame mental illness. The past ten years or so have seen the emergence of more positive portrayals of characters living with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, autism, and more. These portrayals have helped kick down the “madness” door and rebuild a safer space to talk about the realities of mental illness. Though far from perfect these modern narratives nevertheless offer opportunities for viewers living with mental illness to identify with characters that experience familiar struggles.

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The Pop Culture Lens: Episode 11 – Captain Midnight

The Pop Culture Lens is a podcast that offers fresh perspectives on past media. This episode looks at classic pulp hero Captain Midnight through the lenses of transmedia storytelling and adaptation.

The Pop Culture Lens is a scholarly podcast hosted by myself and Dr. CarrieLynn Reinhard of Dominican University. In each episode, we seek to offer fresh perspectives on past media as we attempt to determine whether or not it holds any relevance to the contemporary sociocultural experience. We structure the podcast so the format loosely resembles an academic paper, but we present the information in a way that everyone can understand.

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