Dr. Shannan Palma (she/ her/ hers) is an award-winning expert in how and why people become invested in stories, symbols, and ideas that are not in their own best interests. She is currently midway through researching and writing a trilogy of articles tracing the social construction of incel identity back through “Beauty and the Beast” tales and contemporary media portrayals of nerd and geek masculinities. This trilogy feeds into chapter three of her book project. Fairy-Tale Logic applies insights from folklore and myth scholarship and participatory culture to expose how the logics of misogyny and white supremacy are replicated across generations.

An alum of The OpEd Project, Palma also cohosts Once Upon a Patriarchy, an anti-oppression podcast exploring the long-term impact of Disney’s animated films on adults’ conceptions of gender, race, sexuality, and belonging.

Palma earned her PhD in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies with a PhD Certificate in Film and Media Studies from Emory University. Her dissertation, “Tales as Old as Time? Myth, Gender, and the Fairy Tale in American Popular Culture,” won the 2012 Kore Award for Best Dissertation on Women and Mythology. From 2011 through 2018, she successfully pivoted her academic expertise to work in diversity and inclusion and strategic communication. She entered the faculty in 2018 to found a master’s program in writing and digital communication at Agnes Scott College. She is a fellow at the Institute for Research on Male Supremacy.


International Association for Media and Communication Research
Society for Cinema and Media Studies
Association of Internet Researchers
National Women’s Studies Association
American Academy of Religion
International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts
International Association of Business Communicators

Shannan Palma

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