Queen's Film and Media

Queen's Film and Media

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Dan Vena Photo

Dan Vena is a Vanier Canada Graduate scholar completing his PhD in Cultural Studies at Queen’s University. He locates his academic interests within the spheres of visual and popular cultures, merging together trans, queer, and feminist approaches to an array of topics including: monsters and horror cinema; Classical Hollywood Cinema; comic book superheroes; and histories of medicine.

Examining what he calls, ‘the new woman’s horror picture,’ his dissertation revisits early feminist studies in horror cinema in relation to the recent surge of women directors working within the genre. In his dissertation, he re-evaluates the assumption that horror films foreclose the possibility of female spectatorship, and argues that this recent change in authorship produces a markedly different form of address previously unseen in American and Canadian horror cinemas.

Most recently, his co-authored paper with Robin Alex McDonald, “‘You’re saying that’s a real person... underneath?’: The horrors of the ‘inorganic’ in Jaume Collet-Serra’s House of Wax (2005),” has been accepted for publication in The Graduate Journal for Social Studies. Additionally, his article “The (Super)Man Complex: Re-Reading Superman as a Trans F/Man” will be published in the upcoming September volume of Transformative Works and Cultures.

Complimentary to his academic work, Dan is also a guest speaker and has given numerous university and college lectures on his areas of research. He has been invited to speak at a number of activist- and community-oriented panels and conferences about trans identities, especially in relation to practices of medical care.