Traci Abbott

  • Associate Professor, English and Media Studies
  • Coordinator, Gender Studies Program
  • Ph.D. Univ of Maryland-College Park
  • MA New York University
  • BA Smith College

Teaching Interests

Gender Studies
Queer Studies
Women's Literature
Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Literature
Expository Writing

Research Interests

Gender Studies
Queer Studies
Women's Literature
Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Literature
Transgender Literature

Bio

Traci Abbott's research investigates cultural representations of gender and sexuality in American literature and popular culture in 20th and 21st century novels, television, and film. Her recent book, The History of Trans Representation in American Television and Film Genres (Palgrave, 2022), analyzes transgender narratives in American film and tv from the 1960s to 2010s to assert that such characterizations remain limited and harmful to trans civil rights. Her work has also been published in Women’s Studies, International Journal of Communication, The Journal of American Culture, the edited collection Beyond Binaries: Trans Identities in Contemporary Culture, and elsewhere, and she serves on the editorial review board for Queer Studies in Media & Popular Culture. Her 2022 article in The Journal of Popular Culture, “Trans Brides in the History of Trans Representations: All That Glitters (1977) and Sense8 (2015-2018),” won the Russel B. Nye Award for Outstanding Article, 2023 from The Journal of Popular Culture & Popular Culture Association.

Professional Links

Professional Memberships

  • National Women's Studies Association Present
  • International Communication Association 2017 - Present
  • Popular Culture Association 2005 - Present
  • Awards and Honors

  • 2023, Russel B. Nye Award for Outstanding Article , Popular Culture Association and The Journal of Popular Culture
  • 2017, Joseph M. Cronin Award for Excellence in Academic Advising and Mentoring, Bentley University
  • 2012, Curricular Service-Learning Faculty Award, Bentley Service-Learning Center
  • 2005, Rainbow Award, LGBTQ@Bentley
  • Publications

    Journal Articles


  • Abbott, T. B. (2022). Trans Brides in the History of Trans Representations: All That Glitters (1977) and Sense8 (2015-2018).. Journal of American Culture, (55) 5 25. (Link)
  • Billard, T. J., Abbott, T. B., Haimson, O. L., Whipple, K. N., Whitestone, S. B., Zhang, E. (2020). Rethinking (and Retheorizing) Transgender Media Representation: A Roundtable Discussion. International Journal of Communication, (14) 4494-4507. (Link)
  • Abbott, T. (2013). Transamerica: The Romance Dilemma. The Journal of American Culture, (36) 1 32-41. (Link)
  • Abbott, T. (2009). Teaching Transgender Literature at a Business College. Race, Gender, and Class, (16) 1-2 152-169.
  • Abbott, T. (2008). 'A Good Girl Like Nancy': Willa Cather's Sapphira and the Slave Girl. The Southern Quarterly, (46) 1 26-45.
  • Abbott, T. (2008). Every Woman's Share: Female Sexuality in Fannie Hurst's Imitation of Life. Women's Studies, (37) 6 634-660.
  • Abbott, T. B. (). The Shame of Being Trans: Transgender Patients and Cisgender Doctors on U.S. Medical Dramas. Literature and Medicine, (25) (Link) Forthcoming.

    Books


  • Abbott, T. (2022). The History of Transgender Representation in American Television and Film Genres. 280 pages. London: Palgrave Macmillan (Link)

  • Book Chapters


  • Abbott, T. (2021). The Trans Baby Boom: Framing Male Pregnancy on Television In John Lamonthe, Rachel Friedman and Michael Perez, (Eds.) Beyond Binaries: Trans Identities in Contemporary Culture. 1st 51-68. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books (Link) Forthcoming.

  • Conference Papers


  • Steinfield, L., Abbott, T., Cruz, M., Pierre-Louis, K., Hein, W. (2022). Coping with Intersectional Oppressions: Consumers’ Experience of the Neoliberal-Imperialist White-Supremacist Capitalist Patriarchy of Business SchoolsConsumer Culture Theory Consortium . 60-61.

  • Presentations

  • Abbott, T. (2023). “Gen Z Sexual & Gender Fluidity in U.S. Scripted Television” Presented at the European Communication and Education Research Association ECREA Television Studies Conference Potsdam, Germany
  • Abbott, T. B. (2023). “Scripted American TV and Authentic Plurisexuality: A Generational Analysis” Presented at the International Communication Association International Communication Association Annual Conference Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • Abbott, T. (2023). “Is Euphoria Rewriting or Reaffirming the Meaning of Queer Sexual Exploration in Teen Dramas?” Presented at the Popular Culture Association Association Popular Culture Association Annual Conference San Antonio, TX
  • Steinfield, L., Abbott, T., Cruz, M., Pierre-Louis, K. (2022). “Coping with intersectional oppressions: Consumers’ experience of the neoliberal- imperialist white-supremacist capitalist patriarchy of business schools.” Presented at theThe Consumer Culture Theory 2022 Conference Corvallis, OR
  • Abbott, T. (2022). “Bisexual and Sexually Fluid Female Characters on American TV: New Decade, Same Tropes?” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Virtual
  • Abbott, T. (2021). “Mainstream Queer Representations: from Pinkwashing to Queer-coding and Queer-baiting” Presented at the PopMeC Association for US Popular Culture Studies Contemporary Feminism and Gender Studies Virtual (Madrid, Spain)
  • Abbott, T. (2021). “Trans Characters in U.S. Conspiracy Television Thrillers The OA and Sense8” Presented at the Screen Journal Screen Annual Conference Virtual (usually Univ. of Glasgow, Scotland, UK)
  • Abbott, T. (2021). “Pre-Transition Flashbacks: Lessons from OITNB and Transparent"” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Virtual
  • Abbott, T. (2020). “Intersectionality ” Presented at the Women's Leadership Program, Gender & Sexuality Programs Office, Bentley University Intersectionality Workshop Virtual
  • Abbott, T. (2020). “Trans Characters in U.S. Conspiracy Television Thrillers The OA and Sense8” Presented at the Screen Journal Screen Annual Conference Univ. of Glasgow, Scotland, UK
  • Abbott, T. (2020). “Pre-Transition Flashbacks: Lessons from OITNB and Transparent"” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Virtual
  • Abbott, T. B. (2019). “Trans Necropolitics in U.S. Television Crime Dramas” Presented at the International Communication Association International Communication Association Annual Conference Washington, D.C.
  • Abbott, T. (2019). “Trans Feminine Sex Workers and TV Crime Drama” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Washington, DC
  • Abbott, T. B. (2019). “The “Mystery” of Trans Identities: How TV’s Most Popular Genres Maintain Transphobic Tropes” Presented at the Bentley University Bentley Research Colloquium Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2019). “Sociopathic Men in Dresses and Sassy Trans Hookers: Representations of Trans Criminality” Presented at the Valente Center, Bentley University Valente Center Humanities Research Seminar, “Intersectionality at the Intersect of Disciplines" Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2019). “Trans Characters in Conspiracy Television Thrillers The OA and Sense8” Presented at the Society for Cinema & Media Studies Society for Cinema & Media Studies Annual Conference Seattle, WA
  • Pennel, R., Abbott, T., Stuckey, K., Siomopoulos, A., LeDoux, E., Medden, S. (2019). “Teaching Race, Class, Gender, and Sexuality Workshop”
  • Steinfield, L., Abbott, T. (2018). “The Study of Gender 101” Presented at the GENMAC ACR's Gender, Marketing and Consumer Behavior Conference Dallas Texas
  • Abbott, T. (2018). “Cisgender Experts and Trans Patients on TV Medical Dramas” Presented at theConsole-ing Passions International Conference on Television, Video, Audio, New Media, and Feminism Bournemouth University
  • Abbott, T. (2018). “'Tranny Surprise' vs. 'Tranny Chaser': How TV Trans Characters Remain a Joke” Presented at the International Communication Association International Communication Association Annual Conference Prague, Czech Republic
  • Abbott, T. (2018). “Cisgender Experts and Trans Patients on TV Medical Dramas” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Abbott, T. (2018). “Re-Assessing Lear’s Legacy in the History of Trans Representations: All That Glitters (1977)” Presented at the Society for Cinema & Media Studies Society for Cinema & Media Studies Annual Conference Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • Abbott, T. (2017). “Cisgender/Transgender Romance in Popular Film & Television” Presented at the Bentley University Research Council Faculty Research Showcase Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. B. (2017). “Queer Theory: The Classics” Presented at the Bentley University GENMAC (Gender, Marketing and Consumption) Theory and Foundations workshop Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2017). “Myra’s Legacy: Cis Partners of Transwomen in Popular Film and Television” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference San Diego, California
  • Abbott, T. (2016). “Trans Baby Boom: Documenting the Pregnant Man” Presented at the International Communication Association Annual Conference Fukuoka, Japan
  • Abbott, T. (2016). “Teaching Gender in Introduction to Gender Issues” Presented at the Bentley Office of Diversity and Inclusion Faculty Symposium (Diversity or International Intensive Courses) Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2016). “Impact of Peer Sexual Harassment on Student Development” Presented at the Center for Women and Business Retaining Women in the Workplace, Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2016). “Do Transgender Actors resolve ‘Transface’ Tensions?” ” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Seattle, WA
  • Abbott, T. (2016). “Rape Myths in Popular Culture” Presented at the Office of Gender Equity and Development Bentley Equity Center Educators Equity Center, Bentley University, Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2015). “The Hunting Ground Post-Screening Panel” Presented at the Office of Gender Equity and Development The Hunting Ground Executive Dining Room, LaCava, Bentley University
  • Abbott, T. (2015). “Engaging with Diversity in the Classroom” Presented at the Office of Diversity and Inclusion New Faculty Orientation Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2014). “Beyond Beatie: Documenting the Pregnant Man” Presented at the Valente Center for Arts & Sciences Working Seminar Waltham, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2014). “Is Mister Cee Gay? Transpersons, Sexual Identity, and the Primacy of the Phallus.” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Chicago, IL
  • Dayal, S., Abbott, T., Korepanova, E., Sorensen, K. I., Aslinger, B. S. (2013). “Gender, Queerness & Nation” Presented at the Gender Studies Program and LGBTQ@Bentley Faculty Roundtable Bentley University
  • Abbott, T. (2013). “Transgender Protagonists in YA Fiction” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Washington, D.C.
  • Abbott, T. (2012). “Beyond Beatie: Documenting the Pregnant Man” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Boston, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2011). “Teaching Gender Studies Within Freshman Composition” Presented at the National Women’s Studies Association National Women’s Studies Association Annual Conference Atlanta, GA
  • Abbott, T. (2011). “Cisgender Privilege: Strategies for the Gender Studies Classroom” Presented at the New England Women’s Studies Association New England Women’s Studies Association Annual Conference Dartmouth, MA
  • Abbott, T. (2010). “Queerly High: Drug Use as Gender Rebellion in Godspeed and Rose of No Man’s Land” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference St. Louis, MO
  • Abbott, T. (2007). “Transamerica: The Romance Dilemma” Presented at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Conference Boston, MA
  • Service

    Department Service


  • Committee Member for Curriculum Committee 2022 - Present
  • Committee Member for Planning Committee 2020 - 2022
  • Committee Member for Bentley University English & Media Studies Dept. 2019 - 2020
  • Committee Member for Public Relations Committee 2013 - 2016
  • Committee Member for Strategic Planning Committee 2012 - 2013
  • University Service


  • Committee Member for AIG: Gender Mix 2022 - Present
  • Committee Member for Bentley Learning & Teaching Council 2022 - Present
  • Committee Member for Valente Center for Arts & Sciences 2017 - Present
  • Student Organization Advisor for Delta Sigma Pi 2017 - Present
  • Committee Member for International Film Series 2012 - Present
  • Committee Member for LGBTQ@Bentley 2009 - Present
  • Guest Speaker for Bentley Undergraduate Admissions - 2023
  • Guest Speaker for Bentley Service-Learning & Civic Engagement Center - 2022
  • Guest Speaker for Office of Admissions - 2022
  • Guest Speaker for Bentley Undergraduate Admissions - 2022
  • Guest Speaker for Bentley Academic Technology Center's Tech Talks - 2021
  • Conference/Workshop Organizer for Workshop: Here’s What Sexism at Bentley Looks Like – And What Faculty Can Do About It - 2021
  • Committee Member for #Stonewall50 2019 - 2019
  • Interview Committee Member for Assistant Director position for Bentley Office of Diversity & Inclusion - 2019
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Fusio: The Bentley Undergraduate Research Journal 2019 - 2019
  • Committee Member for Undergraduate Curriculum Advisory Group 2018 - 2018
  • Consultant for Bentley University Library Archives Exhibit "Leading and Learning: A Century of Women at Bentley" 2018 - 2018
  • Task Force Member for Bentley Brave Planning Community 2016 - 2017
  • Student Organization Advisor for Bentley SAGE (Students Advocating Gender Equality) 2016 - 2017
  • Committee Member for Diversity Council 2011 - 2017
  • Committee Member for Title IX/Gender Equity Committee 2010 - 2017
  • Learning Community Faculty Adviser for Women's Leadership Community 2016 - 2017
  • Committee Member for Thought Leadership Network (TLN) Gender and Leadership 2016 - 2016
  • Conference/Workshop Organizer for Residence Center/Orientation Program - 2016
  • Guest Speaker for International Film Series - 2015
  • Conference/Workshop Organizer for LGBTQ@Bentley Ally 1 trainings - 2015
  • Student Organization Advisor for Bentley Women's Center 2009 - 2015
  • Conference/Workshop Organizer for First Week Committee - 2015
  • Guest Speaker for ALANA Experience - 2015
  • Committee Member for Center for Women and Business Advisory Council 2010 - 2015
  • Program Organizer for Screening of TransJourney - 2015
  • Conference/Workshop Organizer for Campus Dialog on Race & Inequality 2015 - 2015
  • Faculty Coordinator for LGBTQ@Bentley 2011 - 2014
  • Guest Speaker for Center for International Students and Scholars - 2013
  • Conference/Workshop Organizer for Residence Life Office - 2013
  • Guest Speaker for Valente Center for Arts and Sciences - 2012
  • Conference/Workshop Organizer for First Week Committee - 2012
  • Conference/Workshop Organizer for Residence Life Office - 2012
  • Guest Speaker for Center for Internatinal Students and Scholars - 2012
  • Professional Service


  • Committee Member for Popular Culture Association LGBTQ Award for Outstanding Scholarship 2017 - Present
  • Editorial Review Board Member for Queer Studies in Media & Popular Culture 2014 - Present
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Sexualities: Studies in Culture and Society 2022 - 2022
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Journal of Gender Studies 2021 - 2021
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for New Review of Film and Television Studies 2020 - 2020
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Prompt: A Journal of Academic Writing Assignments 2020 - 2020
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Journal of Gender Studies 2020 - 2020
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Communication, Culture, and Critique 2018 - 2018
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Communication, Culture, and Critique 2018 - 2018
  • Reviewer, Textbook for Oxford University Press 2018 - 2018
  • Conference/Workshop Session Chair for International Communications Association 2017 - 2018
  • Reviewer, Conference Paper for International Communications Association - 2017
  • Committee Member for New England Women's Studies Association 2013 - 2017
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Communication, Culture, and Critique 2016 - 2016
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for Communication, Culture, and Critique 2015 - 2015
  • Reviewer, Journal Article for The Journal of American Culture 2015 - 2015