CRCC member Jilly Kay speaks at the international symposium ‘Log Out!’ at the University of Toronto

Jilly Kay – the co-lead of our Media, Memory and History theme and Senior Lecturer in Communication and Media at Loughborough University – was an invited speaker at the University of Toronto on March 6th, 2024.

The symposium, hosted by the Institute of Communication, Culture, Information and Technology (ICCIT), was entitled ‘Log Out! The Technopolitics of Refusal’, and focussed on tactics of refusal within our current era of techno-capitalism. Jilly presented a paper entitled “Andrew Tate for girls”: dark feminine influencers and micro-fascist mirror-worlds. She argued that the technopolitics of the manosphere – and its logics of bio-essentialism, evolutionary theory, political fatalism, and the ‘red pill’ philosophy – are increasingly mirrored by female dating influencers. This research forms part of her larger project on ‘reactionary feminism’ and the rise of the ‘femosphere’ – the loose collection of female-centric online communities and influencers which, she argues, is best understood as a gender-flipped version of the manosphere.

Speakers at the event also included Nicole Charles (University of Toronto), Leopoldina Fortunati (University of Udine), Gavin Mueller (University of Amsterdam), Sarah Sharma (University of Toronto) and Rinaldo Walcott (University of Buffalo), and a number of contributions by the University of Toronto doctoral students. 

During the trip to Canada, Jilly also gave a talk at Western University, to staff and students in the Sociology department.

Jilly Kay is a Senior Lecturer in Communication and Media at Loughborough University. She is a co-investigator on the project ‘Re-CARE TV: Reality Television, Working Practices and Duties of Care’ (2023-26), within which she leads the work package on reality television participation. She is co-lead of the Media, Memory and History research theme at Loughborough University, co-convenor of the Media and Gender research group, and co-editor of the European Journal of Cultural Studies


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