Roberta Chevrette is an Assistant Professor of Communication Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies at Middle Tennessee State University. She completed her Ph.D in Communication and a graduate certificate in Gender Studies at Arizona State University in July 2016. She holds a BA in Anthropology and Women’s Studies from Sacramento State University.
Her research addresses the intersections of race, gender, sexuality, culture, and nation that impact global imperial relationships and justice struggles. Taking an interdisciplinary approach to communication studies, she employs critical race/whiteness studies, postcolonial theory, transnational and Indigenous feminisms, and memory studies to examine the formation of national and other publics. Her dissertation, titled “Assembling Global (Non)Belongings: Settler Colonial Memoryscapes and the Rhetorical Frontiers of Whiteness in the US Southwest, Christians United for Israel, and FEMEN,” examines how contemporary constructions of terrorist bodies as “savage” Others to whiteness and western modernity are rooted in settler colonial histories and expansions of US and Anglo-European democracy. Conceptualizing whiteness as a global assemblage that symbolically and materially organizes bodies in relation, she also examines how assemblage theory extends current approaches to studying communication in transnational contexts. Her rhetorical and ethnographic scholarship has been published in various journals, including Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, Communication Theory, Feminist Formations, and Frontiers: A Journal of Women’s Studies. She also has a chapter in the edited volume, Text + Field: Innovations in Rhetorical Method, published by Penn State University Press.
Dr. Chevrette is currently working on a book project with Heather Hundley and Hillary A. Jones titled Dangerous Dames: Representing Female Empowerment in Postfeminist Media. The book illuminates the rhetorical work performed by contemporary representations of a specific type of postfeminist hero who has garnered a lot of cultural capital: women who are smart, capable, physically agile and fit, and proficient with weaponry and technology. Using rhetorical criticism and critical theory, the book examines a range of contemporary texts, including Kill Bill, Volumes I and II; The Hunger Games; Wonder Woman; Atomic Blonde; Proud Mary; The Bionic Woman; Deus Ex; Dark Matter; and Caprica. The book contributes to a robust existing conversation about postfeminist media, tracing how representation has changed in recent years and engaging with new bodies of theory.
Dr. Chevrette has taught a range of interdisciplinary courses in communication and women’s and gender studies including Rhetorical Theory and Approaches, Gender and Communication, Women in the Media, Introduction to Women’s Studies, Intercultural Communication, Critical Methods in Communication, Persuasion, Communication Theory, and Public Speaking. By connecting theory with lived experience, her teaching guides students to become aware of, and critically examine, the ways language, symbols, and ideologies shape cultural and communicative structures and practices.
Please follow the links to find out more about Roberta’s teaching and scholarly activities. Thank you for visiting!