Pockrass Lecture: Two events, focused separately on behavior and identity

March 11, 2021

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Two separate lectures, one focused on behavior and the other on identity, comprise the annual Pockrass Memorial Lecture series in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications at Penn State this spring.

The series features two respected experts on different topics. Both lectures are free and open to the public with registration required. The lectures are:

Chen will discuss the social process that video-game players experience in a game, and what can be understood about their attitudes and social behaviors by the way they use various digital game features. She will also discuss the role of video games in promoting social good.

Chen’s research interests include the impacts of digital games, interaction via new communication technologies, human-computer interaction and intercultural communication. She is an associate editor of the Journal of Media Psychology and the incoming chair of the Game Studies Division of the International Communication Association.

Sobande will explore digital racism and racial capitalism related to online (re)presentations of Black people and associated marketplace logics, digital practices and (re)mediations of race in the service of brands. Such discussion focuses on computer-generated imagery, racialized online influencers, the “spectacularization” of Black pain and lived, digital marketing approaches, and the digital experiences of Black women.

Sobande is director of the media, journalism and culture program at Cardiff University. She has commented on related topic for numerous major media outlets. She is the author of one book and co-author of two others.

The Pockrass Lecture was named for the late Professor Robert M. Pockrass, a member of the Penn State journalism faculty from 1948 to 1977. He specialized in public opinion and popular culture, served as the graduate officer and taught radio news writing in the School of Journalism, a precursor to the Bellisario College. The series typically includes one lecture per semester during the academic year but the schedule was altered this year because of the pandemic.

Last Updated June 02, 2021