Media and Society
Linda Robertson is a scholar of the media. She can be called upon to offer insight into how the media helps formulate public opinion, particularly how the media's use of language and image influences the public's perception of politics, politicians, and national issues.
Her most extensive scholarly analysis has been devoted to war propaganda and its historical influence on the American imagination. She is the author of "Deadly Persuasion: The First World War in the American Imagination, 1914-1918" and her latest book, about war propaganda and its historical influence on American culture, is titled "The Dream of Civilized Warfare: World War I Flying Aces and the American Imagination."
Robertson has also written on the subject of the representation of U.S. and other air power during the Persian Gulf War and the bombing of Belgrade. Among her publications at that time was "From War Propoganda to Sound Bites: The Poster Mentality of Politics in the Age of Television," which appeared in Images in Language, Media, and Mind. She also wrote "From 'Top Dog' to Baghdad" and "The Strange Case of the Missing Chinese Embassy."
Her scholarly publications include numerous and significant publications, along with her colleague William Waller, Jr., on the rhetoric of economics and how it is deployed to mystify economic realities for the general public. Together Robertson and Waller presented "Magus, Meteorologist or Sportscaster?: Redefining Economic Discourse" at the conference on New Economic Criticism at Case Western University and "Making Stuff Up: Evidence, Argument, and Other Stuff in Economic Narrative--Or Discriminating Among Economic Myth, Fairytales and Respectable Literature" to the Association for Institutional Thought at the Annual Meeting of the Western Social Science Association in Denver.
Robertson is also interested in and acutely knowledgeable about feminist issues. This knowledge spans both media-related issues and economic issues. She was contributor to the Elgar Handbook of Feminist Economics on the topic of feminist rhetorical analysis of economic discourse.
While in London with one of the Colleges' term-abroad programs, Robertson was a keen observer of the British response to the September 11, 2001 attack on the U.S.
Discovery: Reading, Writing, and Thinking in the Academic Disciplines
Harcourt, Brace & Collins, Co., Inc., 1989
The Dream of Civilized Warfare: World War I Flying Aces and the American Imagination
University of Minnesota Press, 2003
Interview opportunities and additional background information may be requested through the Office of Communications, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, New York. Phone: (315) 781-3540. After business hours, Communications staff members are accessible through contact information on their answering machine at that number.
Linda Robertson, founder and director of the Media and Society program at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, holds a Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Oregon, where she also received her M.A. and B.A. degrees. She has taught at the Colleges since 1986, and prior to that taught at Wichita State University.
Robertson is also is co-host of a weekly radio talk show, Plato’s Cave, that offers humor, wit, and insight into the relationship between media and politics. Plato's Cave is produced on campus through the Colleges' owned radio station WEOS 89.7 FM and fed to satellite for national distribution.
Her interest in the relationship between popular culture and the formation of values has made her particularly sought after for her views on Martha Stewart, which draws upon economic theory to explain Stewart as a cultural icon. She has been quoted in The New York Times and other media outlets on this and other subjects.