Mel Stanfill

Mel Stanfill


Mel Stanfill is an Associate Professor with a joint appointment in the Texts and Technology Program and the Department of English at the University of Central Florida. Stanfill holds a PhD in Communications and Media from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Stanfill’s research is situated in cultural studies, examining media fans, social media, and the law through lenses of labor, consumption, heteronormativity, and whiteness, and has appeared in venues such as New Media and Society, Cinema Journal, and Transformative Works and Cultures.

Research Interests

Fan Studies; Queer Theory; Race and Gender Studies; Cultural Studies of Law; Media Studies

Selected Publications


  • Salter, Anastasia, and Mel Stanfill. 2020. A Portrait of the Auteur as Fanboy: The Construction of Authorship in Transmedia Franchises. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi.   
  • Stanfill, Mel. 2019. Exploiting Fandom: How the Media Industry Seeks to Manipulate Fans. Iowa City: University of Iowa Press.  


Book Sections/Chapters

  • Stanfill, Mel and Anastasia Salter. 2022. “Avatar Bodies That Matter: The Work of 'Realism' in Gendered Representation.” EA Sports FIFA: Feeling the Game, edited by Raiford Guins, Henry Lowood, and Carlin Wing. New York:  Bloomsbury Press
  • Stanfill, Mel. 2020. “Straight (White) Women Writing about Men Bonking? Complicating our Understanding of Gender and Sexuality in Fandom.” The Routledge Handbook of Gender and Communication, edited by Marnel Niles Goins, Joan Faber McAlister, and Bryant Keith Alexander, 446-458. New York: Routledge.
  • Mel Stanfill, Chris Gurrie, Jenny Korn, Jason M. Martin, and Khadijah White. 2018. “Climate on Campus: Intersectional Interventions in Contemporary Struggles.” Interventions: International Communication Association 2017 Theme Book New York: Peter Lang, p. 229-243
  • Stanfill, Mel. 2018. “The Unbearable Whiteness of Fandom and Fan Studies” in Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Fandom, ed Paul Booth. New York: Wiley-Blackwell. 
  • Stanfill, Mel. 2017. “The Fan Fiction Gold Rush, Generational Turnover, and the Battle for Fandom’s Soul”in Routledge Companion to Media Fandom, ed Melissa Click and Suzanne Scott. New York: Routledge.  
  • Stanfill, Mel. 2016. “Straighten up and Fly White: Whiteness, Heteronormativity, and the Representation of Happy Endings for Fans.” In Seeing Fans: Representations of Fandom in Media and Popular Culture, edited by Lucy Bennett and Paul Booth. New York: Bloomsbury Academic.


Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
19700 ENG3073 Cultural Studies Literature Face to Face (P) Tu,Th 01:30 PM - 02:45 PM Unavailable

One way to think about Cultural Studies is that it’s what happens when we apply literary studies techniques to popular culture and everyday life. Cultural Studies sits at the intersection of literary studies, media studies, political economy, cultural anthropology, and critical theory, among other things. In this course, we consider popular culture in order to understand it on its own terms, but also to comprehend how it is embedded in issues of power and identity. Cultural Studies originated in taking working class culture seriously and has long had a commitment to centering the voices of those left out of “high” or dominant culture. The course will provide a general introduction to Cultural Studies, emphasizing the history, conceptual foundations, and objects of inquiry of the field in both its American and British iterations, with attention to cultural forms like television, music, fashion, digital culture, and fan fiction.  

Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
92695 ENG6624 Social Media Research Face to Face (P) W 06:00 PM - 08:50 PM Unavailable
No Description Available
81262 LIT6936 Studies in Lct Theory Face to Face (P) M 06:00 PM - 08:50 PM Unavailable

Queer Cultural Studies 


“Queer” is a slur, a form of activism, and an area of academic inquiry. It’s an umbrella term for the LGBTQIA population and an identity category in its own right. It’s a noun, an adjective, and a verb. This course explores the interplay between these forms of “queer” in popular culture—popular culture that is about queers, that is queer, and the process of queering it. It considers, but also troubles, the traditional division of media studies into production, text, and audience. It looks at how queers produce texts, how queer texts are produced, and how textual production is queer. It asks how texts are about queers or are queer or are queering/disorienting. It explores queer folks as audiences, audiences for queer texts, or audiences queering ostensibly “straight” texts. And it interrogates how with digital media things get quite queer with drawing sharp categorical distinctions between these three sites at all. 

No courses found for Summer 2022.

Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
10964 ENG3612 Trendslitcultural Text Studies Face to Face (P) Tu,Th 04:30 PM - 05:45 PM Unavailable
Fan Studies
From Star Wars to Harry Potter to Fifty Shades of Gray, many of the biggest popular culture phenomena of recent years have also been big phenomena in fandom. In this course, we will explore fan culture and textual practices. How do people take TV, film, games, and other popular texts and make them their own? What can we understand about reading practices from fan interpretation? What can we understand about creative writing by looking at fan fiction, videos, and other works? How are these practices shaped by social structures like gender, race, sexuality, economics, and the law? Gain insight into these questions and more in Fan Studies.  
Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
81080 ENG6800 Intro to Texts & Technology Face to Face (P) M 06:00 PM - 08:50 PM Unavailable
No Description Available
92302 LIT3933 Literature and Law Face to Face (P) M,W 03:00 PM - 04:15 PM Unavailable
The First Amendment. Copyright. Banned Books. The Public Domain. All of these are places where the law and literary and cultural texts come into contact—and, often, conflict. Through a tour of legal concepts that impact how we create and consume literary and cultural texts, we will explore how the law and literature (broadly construed) interact with one another, with the law responding to literature and literature responding to the law.  

No courses found for Summer 2021.

Updated: Oct 20, 2022