Emily Contois - Faculty & Adjuncts

Emily Contois, PhD, MPH, MLA

Emily Contois by KC Hysmith
Emily Contois, PhD, MPH, MLA
Chapman Assistant Professor of Media Studies
College of Arts & Sciences
Media Studies
918-631-3845 Website Oliphant Hall Room 132


PhD – Brown University M.P.H. – University of California, Berkeley M.L.A. – Boston University MA – Brown University BA – University of Oklahoma


Dr. Emily Contois is a scholar and teacher of media, food, health, and identity. Her book, Diners, Dudes & Diets: How Gender and Power Collide in Food Media & Culture (University of North Carolina Press, 2020) demonstrates how the food, marketing, and media industries manipulated the concept of "the dude" in order to sell feminized food phenomena to men post-2000. She considers examples such as cookbooks, food TV, yogurts, and weight loss programs. She is also co-editor with Dr. Zenia Kish of Food Instagram: Identity, Influence, and Negotiation (University of Illinois Press, 2022).

Dr. Contois completed her PhD in American Studies at Brown University with a Doctoral Certificate in Gender and Sexuality Studies and three specialized teaching certificates from Brown's Sheridan Center for Teaching and Learning. She is the author of more than twenty-five peer-reviewed articles, chapters, reference entries, and reviews.

Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, NPR, The Huffington Post, and Salon, among others. As a public scholar, she has also appeared on CBS This Morning, BBC Ideas, and Ugly Delicious with chef David Chang on Netflix. She is the Book Reviews Editor for Food, Culture & Society and serves on the boards of the Association for the Study of Food and Society, H-Nutrition, and the Bloomsbury Food Library. She also writes for Nursing Clio, blogs at emilycontois.com, and is active on social media at @emilycontois.

Research Interests

Dr. Contois’ research examines the connections between food, the body, health, and identities in the everyday American experience and popular culture.

As an interdisciplinary scholar, her research fields include: media studies, popular culture, food studies, gender studies, critical nutrition studies, fat studies, American studies, history of medicine, and twentieth-century U.S. history.

Dr. Contois’ recent publications have appeared in Feminist Media Studies, Journal of Historical Research on Marketing, American Studies, Fat Studies, and Gastronomica: The Journal of Critical Food Studies, among others.

Teaching Interests

Dr. Contois’ teaching interests include: media studies, popular culture, food studies, food media, food writing, advertising, gender studies, nutrition and health.

For more information about Dr. Contois’ teaching, visit: https://emilycontois.com/category/teaching/



  • Diners, Dudes & Diets: How Gender & Power Collide in Food Media & Culture. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, fall 2020.

Journal Articles

  • “Welcome to Flavortown: Guy Fieri’s Populist American Food Culture.” American Studies, The Food Issue 57, no. 3 (2018), 143-160.

  • “The Spicy Spectacular: Food, Gender, and Celebrity on Hot Ones.” Feminist Media Studies 18, no. 4 (2018): 769-785. Commentary and Criticism: Food Media.

  • “‘Lose Like a Man:’ Gender and the Constraints of Self-Making in Weight Watchers Online.” Gastronomica: The Journal of Critical Food Studies 17, no. 1 (2017): 33-43.

  • “‘He just smiled and gave me a Vegemite sandwich:’ Advertising Australia’s National Food in the United States, 1968-1988.” Journal of Historical Research in Marketing. Special issue: Australian Marketing History 8, no. 3 (2016): 343-357.

  • “Healthy Food Blogs: Creating New Nutrition Knowledge at the Crossroads of Science, Foodie Lifestyle, and Gender Identities.” Yearbook of Women’s History 36 (2016): 129-145. Special Issue: “Gendered Food Practices from Seed to Waste.”

  • “Guilt-Free and Sinfully Delicious: A Contemporary Theology of Weight Loss Dieting.” Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society. Special Issue: Religion and Fat 4, no. 2 (2015): 112-126.

  • “Not Just for Cooking Anymore: Exploring the Twenty-First Century Trophy Kitchen.” Graduate Journal of Food Studies 1 (2014): 1-8.

  • “Toned Tummies and Bloated Bellies: Activia Yogurt and Gendered Digestion.” CuiZine: The Journal of Canadian Food Cultures 5 (2014), no. 1.

  • “Food and Fashion: Exploring Fat Female Identity in Drop Dead Diva.” Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society. Special Issue: Visual Representation 2, no. 2 (2013): 183-196.

Book Chapters

  • Contois , E. Blogging Food, Performing Gender. 2020.
  • “Blogging Food, Performing Gender,” in Cambridge Companion to Food and Literature, edited by J. Michelle Coghlan. Cambridge University Press, 2020.

  • “’Lose Like a Man:’ Gender and the Constraints of Self-Making in Weight Watchers Online,” in Feminist Food Studies: Intersectional Perspectives, edited by Barbara Parker, Jennifer Brady, Elaine Power, Susan Belyea. Women’s Press, 2019. [Invited Reprint]

  • with Anastasia Day, “History of Food and Public Health,” in Food and Public Health, edited by Allison Karpyn. Oxford University Press, 2018.

Book Reviews

  • Contois , E. Blogging Food, Performing Gender. 2020.
  • “Michelle Szabo and Shelley Koch (Eds.) Food, Masculinities, and Home: Interdisciplinary Perspectives.” Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute. Published online February 13, 2020. doi.org/10.1111/1467-9655.13202.

  • “Megan Condis, Gaming Masculinity: Trolls, Fake Geeks & the Gendered Battle for Online Culture.” The Journal of Popular Culture. Published online April 15, 2019. DOI: 10.1111/jpcu.12779

  • “Camille Bégin, Taste of the Nation: The New Deal Search for America’s Food.” Global Food History 4, no. 1 (2018): 105-106.

  • “Emily E. LB. Twarog, Politics of the Pantry: Housewives, Food, and Consumer Protest in Twentieth-Century America.” Dósis: medical humanities + social justice. February 21, 2018.

  • “Natalie Jovanovski, Digesting Femininities: The Feminist Politics of Contemporary Food Culture.” CuiZine: The Journal of Canadian Food Cultures 9, no. 1 (2018).

  • “A.R. Ruis, Eating to Learn, Learning to Eat: The Origins of School Lunch in the United States.” Social History of Medicine 31, no. 2 (2017): 436-438.

  • “Food Culture at the Margins: Two New Books on Eating Disorders.” Gastronomica: The Journal of Critical Food Studies 17, no. 3 (2017): 104-105.

  • “Katharina Vester, A Taste of Power: Food and American Identities.” Food, Culture & Society 19, no. 4 (2016): 727-729.

  • “Amy Bentley (editor), A Cultural History of Food in the Modern Age.” Graduate Journal of Food Studies 2, no. 2 (2015): 51-52.

  • “Review Conversations: The Means of Reproduction.” Fiction Reboot | The Daily Dose: At the Intersection of Medicine and Literature. July 15, 2015.

  • “Adam Shprintzen, The Vegetarian Crusade: The Rise of an American Reform Movement, 1817-1921.” Food and Foodways 22, no. 1-3 (2014): 348-350.

  • “Charlotte Biltekoff, Eating Right in America: The Cultural Politics of Food and Health.” Digest: A Journal of Foodways and Culture 3, no. 1: (2014).

  • “Kyla Wazana Tompkins, Racial Indigestion: Eating Bodies in the Nineteenth Century.” HARTS & Minds: The Journal of Humanities and Arts 2, no. 1: (2014).

Courses Taught

  • Media & Popular Culture
  • Special Topics in Media Studies
  • Special Topics in Women's and Gender Studies I
  • Topics in Communication
  • Communication Systems
  • Principles of Advertising
  • Independent Study
  • Media and Popular Culture
  • Persuasive Influences in America

Awards & Honors

  • 2020 MVP (Most Valuable Professor)
  • 2020 Faculty Development Summer Fellowship
  • 2019-2020 Chapman Professorship
  • Faculty Development Summer Fellowship
  • 2019 Equity Award