American Studies

Olivia M. Tai - Race, Class, and Media Representation

Olivia is pursuing a career in music and the creative arts. She works as a Marketing Assistant for a local music venue in her hometown of San Diego, and hopes to establish herself in the music business and work at a record label.

Area of Concentration Courses

Sociol 140: Politics & Social Change
Eth Std 101B: Humanities Methods in Ethnic Studies
Journ 136: Media Ethics
History 123: Civil War & Reconstruction
Amerstd 101: The Atomic Age
Sociol 131AC: History of Race in the United States


The ‘Poverty Aesthetic’ as Pseudo-Counterculturalism: A Sociological Analysis of Advanced Capitalism in the Postmodern Era

Olivia’s honors thesis explored economic and socio-cultural phenomena of the late-stage capitalist society in the U.S., specifically analyzing the ‘poverty aesthetic,’ or the appropriation of symbols associated with working-class impoverishment in high fashion and popular culture through a Marxist and Postmodernist lens.

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