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Tanner Mirrlees, PhD

Tanner Mirrlees

>> Assistant Professor

Professor Mirrlees’ research focuses on the economics, geopolitics and ideology of entertainment media. He is an award-winning teacher and an emerging critical communications scholar.

Tanner Mirrlees is an Assistant Professor in the Communication and Digital Media Studies Program at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT). Before joining UOIT, he was an assistant professor (LTF) in the Politics and Public Administration department at Ryerson University.

Professor Mirrlees’ research centers on key topics in the political economy of communications tradition such as U.S. Empire and communications, the politics of popular culture and labor in the cultural industries. His research has led to published books including Hearts and Mines: The U.S. Empire’s Culture Industry (University of British Columbia Press, 2015), Global Entertainment Media: Between Cultural Imperialism and Cultural Globalization (Routledge, 2013), and The Television Reader (Oxford University Press, 2013) and articles in journals such as The International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics, Democratic Communiqué and Cineaction.

Mirrlees recently co-edited “Media, Technology, and the Culture of Militarism”, a special issue of Democratic Communiqué (with Robin Andersen) and “A Military Industrial Communications Complex in Canada”, a special issue of Global Media Journal: Canadian Edition (with Pat Mazepa and Kirsten Kozolanka).

Mirrlees is also an associate of the Decimal Lab at UOIT, where he is examining how interactive war video games prefigure the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DOD) research and development (R&D) of transhuman technologies and also, how the DOD is integrating of new technologies into its arsenal and war-fighting doctrine. By interrogating the mutually constitutive relationships and transcodings between the digitally playable representations of weaponized transhuman technology and the DOD, Mirrlees’ research at the Decimal Lab highlights how popular culture anticipates, feeds into and accelerates the militarization of a material and imaginative shift toward the transhuman.


Hearts and Mines: The U.S. Empire’s Culture Industry, University of British Columbia Press, 2015.

Global Entertainment Media: Between Cultural Imperialism and Cultural Globalization, Routledge, 2013.

The Television Reader: Critical Perspectives in Canadian and US Television Studies, Oxford University Press, 2013.


Decimal Lab

Courses Taught

  • COMM 1100 Introduction to Communication
  • COMM 2270 Entertainment Goes Global
  • COMM 2411 Information & Society
  • COMM 3510 Work in the Information Age

Research Areas

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