Mid-Atlantic Popular &
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Mary Beth Ray - 2023 Lorance Award Honoree

Dr. Mary Beth Ray is an Associate Professor and Chair of Communication & Media Studies, and Co-Chair of Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies at Plymouth State University. Her research focuses on internet culture, gender, popular music, and media. She holds a Ph.D. from Temple University’s Mass Media and Communication Program and an M.A. in Media Studies from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communication. Dr. Ray is a long-time co-chair of the Popular Culture Association’s (PCA) Internet Culture Area, as well as of the Mid-Atlantic Popular/American Culture Association’s (MAPACA) Music Area. Her work can be found in Rock Brands: Selling Sound in a Media Saturated Culture (Lexington, 2010) and Consumer Identities: Agency, Media, and Digital Culture (Intellect, 2019). She co-authored “Beyond technology: Calling for critical inquiry on the cultural impact(s) of the Internet” (2020) in Computers in Human Behavior. She is the sole author of Digital Connectivity and Music Culture – Artists & Accomplices (Palgrave MacMillan, 2017) and editor of the forthcoming collection Essays on Music, Adolescence, and Identity: The Adolescentia Project (Palgrave MacMillan, 2024). Dr. Ray attended her first MAPACA conference in Philadelphia in 2011 and presented in the Internet Culture Area. From there, she attended yearly, presenting, volunteering, and eventually joining the executive board. She first partnered with Dr. Jordan McClain as VP of Communication and held that position until 2019, when the baton was officially passed to Dr. Meredith Guthrie. Since 2015 she has co-chaired the Music Area with Dr. Raj Singh. She is immensely grateful for the support and fellowship of her MAPACA comrades and thrilled to accept the Lorance Award – at the same site of her first MAPACA conference those many years ago.

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