Photo of Kathryn Brownell

Kathryn Brownell

Assistant Professor

Kathryn Cramer Brownell is an Assistant Professor of History in the Department of History.  She received her Ph.D. in History from Boston University in 2011 and her B.A. in History from the University of Michigan in 2004.  She taught in the history department at Boston University before coming to Purdue.  Her research and teaching examine twentieth-century United States political history with a focus on the relationships between media, politics, and popular culture.  Her current book project, “Showbiz Politics: Hollywood in American Politics,” explores the institutionalization of Hollywood in American politics from 1928-1980.  This book traces the key personal relationships, institutions, and government policies that established the foundation for a celebrity political culture and made entertainment a central feature of American politics.  Her future research will extend into questions of governance and political culture in the cable news age.  From the process of deregulation to the rise of cable television and the advent of the internet, this project will analyze the political origins, economic pressures, and cultural implications of the of twenty-four hour news cycle.

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