Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies



Cultural Communities, Cosmopolitanism and Citizenship

A forum for discussion, seminars, and the development of a research culture around cultural communities.

This group shares an interest in a diverse range of issues connected by the notions of citizenship, nation, race, and cosmopolitanism. We are particularly interested in the role of culture in both uniting communities and (re)creating divisions. Our research also analyses the role of the state, and wider social structural shifts for historical and contemporary societies. We study how demographic change, including migration, changes the nature of the societies we live in, affects social integration, and even shapes the physical and cultural environment.

Areas of interest include:

  • the implications of contemporary forms of migration for community life
  • elite migration
  • media and migration
  • social class and migration
  • race stereotyping in contemporary and historical context
  • religious and ethnic minorities
  • intersectionality
  • social class as cultural practice
  • social theory

One of the special features of the group is a concern to use social theory to understand the interaction of macro and micro processes in the practice of daily life.

CRCC seminar series 


Research Students

  • Hui Ju Tsai.
  • Gennaro Errichiello
  • David Smith
  • Siti Nurnadilla Mohamad Jamil:Social Sciences - Peddling propaganda for votes:  A critical discourse analysis of political speeches in Malaysian General electoral campaigns from 1999 to 2013.
  • Shani Burke: Social Sciences - Visual Arguments in Online Rhetoric about Asylum Seekers: a Discursive Analysis. 
  • Sunida Siwapathomchai

Affiliated members

CulCom is affiliated with the Migration, Identity and the State Research group in the Department of Geography and with the Politicized Practice Research Group.

Lifestyle Migration in East Asia

The Lifestyle Migration in East Asia Project started in 2012 to capture the motivations, experiences and outcomes of lifestyle migration in Thailand, Malaysia and China. The multi-institutional project team consists of Professor Karen O’Reilly and Dr Kate Botterill (Loughborough University), Professor Rob Stones (Essex University), Dr Maggy Lee (University of Hong Kong). This project was funded by the Economic and Social Research Council and The Research Grants Council, Hong Kong. The study raised issues around health and social security in older age; unexpected side effects of the ways in which migration is governed; long-term effects of colonialism; a challenge to the stereotyping of elite migrants; social commitment and community for expatriates; and what it means to be cosmopolitan. These areas are all in the process of being examined for future publication in peer-reviewed academic journals. For more information see the project web site: Lifestyle Migration in East Asia

Multicultural citizenship: Intersections between feminism, ethnic identity and religion

This project, led by Dr Line Nyhagen, was part of the overall FEMCIT project (Gendered Citizenship in Multicultural Europe: The Impact of Women’s Movements), funded by the European Commission’s 6th framework program (2007-2011). The project led by Line has resulted in two major books as well as other research outputs. The most recent book (Line Nyhagen and Beatrice Halsaa (in press, forthcoming March 2016), Religion, Gender and Citizenship: Women of Faith, Gender Equality and Feminism. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan), focuses on Christian and Muslim women in Norway, Spain and the UK and their understandings of citizenship, gender equality, feminism and women’s movements. An earlier book (Line Nyhagen and Beatrice Halsaa (2012). Majority-Minority Relations in Contemporary Women’s Movements: Strategic Sisterhood. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan) examines relations between ethnic majority and ethnic minority women in women’s movements in Norway, Spain and the UK. Line has also written articles and book chapters that include a discussion of ‘lived religious citizenship’ and limitations to rights-based approaches to citizenship, and the use of ‘citizenship’ as a frame for claims-making by women’s movement activists. For more information see the project web site: and Line’s staff web page.

International project will explore the ways in which European identity is sustaining or undermining the political legitimacy of the EU during the current economic crisis.

Susan Condor is a member of a team with Denis Sindic, Rui Costa-Lopes (Universidade de Lisboa) and Xenia Chryssochoou (Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences) awarded a grant by the Fundacao Para la Ciencia a Tecnologia for an international project, ‘Exploring political attitudes to Europe: identity and legitimacy’.

This international project will explore the ways in which European identity is sustaining or undermining the political legitimacy of the EU during the current economic crisis.  Past research has largely treated European identity as a monolithic concept, paying little attention to its different dimensions as well as its specifically politicized aspect. In contrast, this present project will explore various dimensions of European and national identities, and examine the ways in which these may be related to attitudes towards EU integration, governance and practices.

Screening Socialism: Television and Everyday Life in Socialist Eastern Europe (2013-16)

Dr Sabina Mihelj was awarded a £242,000 grant from the Leverhulme Trust to conduct a large-scale comparative study of popular television, political change and memory in socialist Eastern Europe. The results are expected to bring vital insights into the nature of socialist societies and cultures and the reasons for their collapse, as well as contribute to a better understanding of post-socialist memory formation and the dynamics of memory and its relationship to the media more generally. The project will cover five socialist countries and will draw on archival sources, quantitative and qualitative analysis of popular television series, contemporary audience research and life-story interviews.