Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Social and Behavioral Sciences
Asexuality remains an under-researched topic in media, gender & sexualities studies. Previous research has explored definitional questions of asexuality, interviews and surveys of asexual people, and consideration of asexuality’s place within queer and feminist communities. However, research has not yet fully explored the issue of asexuality invisibility in the media, which currently amounts to symbolic annihilation. While representation of asexuality is nearly non-existent in mainstream and traditional media, digital spaces have been the location of visibility and self-expression for asexuals. In examining how queer representation of asexuality is seen and made visible online, this textual analysis study examined the content created by ten asexuality-focused subdivisions (“subreddits”) of the social media site Reddit. This study found that asexual subreddits serve as areas of community, pride, and discussion on the concept of asexuality for asexual individuals, while they serve as resources and locations of support for those in the early stages of questioning or understanding their own asexuality. These efforts fight symbolic annihilation of asexuality to these groups of people, though whether these sites combat larger invisibilities is unclear.
Webster, Kyle Kreye, "A TEXTUAL ANALYSIS OF ONLINE ASEXUAL REPRESENTATION AND VISIBILITY ON REDDIT" (2020). Theses - ALL. 414.
Available for download on Sunday, August 15, 2021