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Dr Lisa Taylor


About Dr Lisa Taylor

Lisa Taylor is a working class academic and a media and cultural studies scholar. Her work explores how identity and self-worth are entwined in media representations such as lifestyle media and factual welfare programming; quotidian spaces such as the 'ordinary' garden; and ex-industrial locales where demolition and spatial change impacts on local communities.   

Interested in making studying the media accessible to students, Lisa co-authored a media studies textbook with Andrew Willis 'Media Studies: Texts, Institutions and Audiences' (Blackwell, 1999) which was subsequently translated into several languages. Her work has explored popular cinema, music and film stardom (Prince) and reality television.

Lisa Taylor's PhD, published in 2008 'A Taste for Gardening' looked at the relationship between lifestyle garden media, gardeners and questions of taste, class and gender. Focusing on how gardens were represented in lifestyle television led to an empirical study of the 'ordinary' garden - a space shot through with classed and gendered aesthetic practices.

Lisa is interested in art and is a practising print maker.Her article, 'Etchings in the Attic' (2016) used memory and the Women's Liberation Movement to reflect on her feminist practice in the 1980s. Using sensuous ethnography in 'He's Making our North' (2016) she looked at the ways people from Yorkshire use David Hockney's landscape paintings to positively transform how they thought about the North.



Current Teaching

Lisa teaches undergraduate modules 'Media Interactions' and 'Lifestyle, Media, Identity' and the option module 'Art as Media' on MA Media and Culture.

Research Interests

She is writing a new monograph which uses mobile ethnography to explore the impact of demolition and architectural loss in an ex-industrial textiles community. Working collaboratively with its members she aims to make a series of etchings to explore the ghostly affective registers which still pervade de-industrial sites. Its aim is to bring people together via conversation, memories, photographic motifs and remembered skills to create art at the site of the research.

She is currently working with Professor Jayne Raisborough and Dr. Katherine Harrison as a Co-I on a BA funded external research award 2019/20: ‘What function do representations of space and place perform in factual welfare programmes: towards a visual grammar of benefits stigma.’

Lisa is also is exploring the 'do-good' role of gardening television as a substitute for social care in post-welfare Britain. 

Selected Publications

Journal articles (5)

Books (2)

  • Taylor L (2008) A Taste for Gardening. Ashgate Publishing.
  • Taylor L; Willis A (1999) Media Studies. Wiley-Blackwell.

Chapters (4)

  • Taylor LJ (2012) I'm a Girl: I Should be a Princess: Aesthetic Innovation and Middle-Class Entitlement in The Hills.. In: Skeggs B; Wood H Reality Television and Class. : British Film Institute, pp. 119-131.
  • Taylor LJ (2008) From Ground-Force to Garden-Marking: How Ordinary Gardeners Consume Lifestyle Television Aesthetics. In: Hussey DE; Ponsonby M Buying for the home. : Ashgate Pub Co, pp. 183-197.
  • Taylor LJ (2005) It was Beautiful Before you Changed it all: The Transformative Aesthetics of the Make-over in the Garden Lifestyle Media. In: Bell D; Hollows J Ordinary Lifestyles: Popular Media, Consumption and Taste. : Open University Press, pp. .
  • Taylor LJ (2004) Baby I'm a Star: Towards a Political Economy of the Artist Formerly Known as Prince'. In: Willis A Film Stars: Hollywood and Beyond. : Manchester University Press, pp. 158-173.
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