Department of Culture Studies
The department of Culture Studies (DCU) studies culture, intercultural communication and artistic practices in the global and digital society through a fundamentally interdisciplinary approach in which anthropological, sociolinguistic-semiotic, psychological, political, aesthetical and ethical perspectives are merged.
Core research includes the impact of digital technologies on contemporary sociocultural life at all levels and in all domains of society, and the analysis and understanding of various new activities, media strategies and creative phenomena in micro and macro public spheres in the digital world .
We see the online and offline dimensions of sociocultural life as fundamentally intertwined and inseparable. This nexus implies a new stage of globalization demanding insights transcending those of single societies and raising new and unprecedented issues about transcultural contact, borrowing and influencing. At the same time, this new stage of globalization demands historical contextualization of contemporary social, communicative and artistic phenomena.
The DCU department publishes the Tilburg Papers in Culture Studies and hosts the research center Babylon (director Prof. dr. J. Blommaert). Research and education are linked in the unique and exciting electronic forum Diggit Magazine (editor-in-chief Dr. I. Maly), which is an important platform for discussion and the sharing of knowledge and perspectives .
A substantial part of the research of the department is funded through external grants, such as Jenny Slatman’s Vici project on Mind and Body, Sanneke de Haan’s Veni project on Authenticity, and several PhD projects (NWO promoties in de GW) and ZONMW projects, as well as projects funded by Stichting Lezen, Provincie Zuid-Holland and Expat Center Eindhoven .
DCU is responsible for a flourishing teaching program in Culture Studies (BA and MA). Specializations in the program are:
- BA Online Culture: Art in the Public Sphere, Global Communication, Digital Media, Teacher Dutch Language (Universitaire Lerarenopleiding Nederlands).
- MA Culture Studies: Online Culture; Health Humanities, Management of Cultural Diversity; Children’s Literature (Jeugdliteratuur) which is connected to an Erasmus Mundus Program with other European Universities. As of September 2020, two new MA tracks will be launched: Digital Culture Studies, and Art & Media Studies. Digital Culture Studies focuses on digitalization, human behavior and new social practices. Art & Media Studies focuses on new media and artistic (fundamentally critical) practices in the digital public sphere.
The department is also involved in the Research Master Linguistics and Communication Sciences, jointly organized with Radboud University Nijmegen .
DCU hosts about 30 staff members, and about 22 PhD students.
- Prof. dr. O.M. Heynders ‒ Head of Department
- Dr. M. Hoondert ‒ Director of Studies
- Prof. dr. A.M. Backus ‒ Program Leader
Tilburg Papers in Culture Studies Babylon
TPCS is intended to be a genuine ‘working papers’ series. That means that work-in-progress is invited, that papers do not yet require the level of elaboration usually demanded of journal-publishable papers, that good MA dissertations can also be included, and so on.
Diggit Magazine is a community-driven academic news and information platform connected to the bachelor 'Online Culture: Art, Media and Society' and the masters in Culture Studies of Tilburg University. It provides quality information in times of digitalization, globalization and superdiversity. Diggit Magazine is a learning instrument and a niche magazine at the same time.