Barbara Dupont

Barbara Dupont

  • Université catholique de Louvain (UCL) / Institut des hautes études des communications sociales (IHECS)
  • Communication
Participant in 2015
Work history Sept. 2013 to present : Teaching Assistant at IHECS, Brussels (Institut des hautes études des communications sociales).
Study history - Currently PhD student - Université catholique de Louvain (UCL, Louvain-la-Neuve)

- 2011-2012: Master in Cultural Studies - Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KUL, Leuven)

- 2006-2011: Master in Applied Communication and Media Literacy - Institut des hautes études des communications sociales (IHECS, Brussels)

- 2008: Erasmus semester, Media & Journalism - Cardiff University (Wales)
Publications *Publications:
- January 2015 : Collaboration with Mathieu de Wasseige for his book (Séries télé US, l'idéologie prime time, Louvain-la-Neuve: L'Harmattan)
- January 2014: "Une réponse aux tensions post-féministes: l'empowerment de Grey's Anatomy", Revue française des sciences de l'information et de la communication, [in French]

- April 2015 - University of Toulouse (France): Gender diversity, "The female cast of Orange is the New Black: an opportunity to rethink gender representations."
- October 2014 - University of Le Havre (France): Remake, genre and gender in film and television series of the English-speaking world, "Emotions can get you killed, bury them: Women of power in V."
- April 2014 - University of Namur (Belgium): LGBTQI in scientific research, "Grey's Anatomy and female empowerment."
-March 2014 - University of Bordeaux Montaigne (France): Gender and series, "Gender binarity in question: the example of female masculinity in Glee."
- May 2013 - University of Nantes (France): TV series' music, "Musical performance and teenagers' quest for identity in Glee."

Phd Projects


The combination of a family life and a career in US television series

This project consists of a combination of two distinct disciplines that are nonetheless inextricably linked: the study of television series (and the indispensable contribution of television studies and cultural studies underpinning it) and gender studies. More specifically, this research will focus on the way American television series, comprehended as powerful vehicles of social and political (re)presentation, depict the difficulties of combining a professional life and a family life, which is one of the central stakes of gender studies and feminism today. Indeed, the so-called “maternal instinct” still tends to impact our definition of femininity, and the ability to carry a child our definition of ‘being a mother’. This research argues that television series have the ability to destabilize and de-essentialize notions of the dyads masculinity/femininity and man/woman, through their depictions of such stakes.

The progressive fragmentation of the feminist movement led us to the plural theoretical framework that we know today, allowing masculinity, queer and trans identities and postfeminist points of view into the debate. With this evolution, the very notions of masculinity and femininity are redesigned, first within academic fields, then progressively in popular culture, where television plays a crucial role. Indeed, as Mumford puts it, “there is some relationship between the representations of gender that occur on television and the way that gender operates in viewers’ lives” (Mumford 1998, 117).

More specifically, television series hold intrinsic characteristics that turn them into powerful vectors of sense and meaning and that allow them to reach spectators to a particular extent. As the result of their creator’s subjectivity and of economic imperatives, these “paraphrases of reality” (Esquenazi 2010, 187) offer a peculiar version of our society where progress as well as weaknesses can be anticipated, emphasized, negociated or erased. Therefore, the depiction of gender and sexuality that are found in TV series are crucial and participate, on the one hand, in individual construction of identity, gendered or otherwise, and on the other hand, in collective considerations around those issues.


Esquenazi, Jean-Pierre (2010). Les séries télévisées : l’avenir du cinéma ? Paris : Armand colin.

Mumford, Laura Stempel (1998). “Feminist Theory and Television Studies.” The Television Studies Book. Ed. Christine Geraghty and David Lusted. London: Arnold. 114-30.

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