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Dolber, Ph.D.

Brian Dolber, Ph.D. (2017)

Assistant Professor of Communication


Phone: (760) 750 - 8206

Office: SBSB 2205  

Brian Dolber earned his Ph.D. in Communication from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (2011), with a focus in political economy, media history, and media policy. He also holds a B.A. in journalism from The George Washington University (2003). 

Dr. Dolber is the author of Media and Culture in the U.S. Jewish Labor Movement: Sweating for Democracy in the Interwar Era (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017), which explores the Jewish Left’s innovative strategies in maintaining newspapers, radio stations, and educational activities during a moment of crisis in global democracy-- the 1920s and 1930s. By adapting to an emerging media environment dependent on advertising, Jewish immigrant socialists constructed a new political identity compatible with American liberalism and an expanding consumer society, securing a place within the New Deal coalition they helped to produce. He is also the author of several journal articles published in venues such as Communication, Culture and CritiqueCommunication Theory, and Democratic Communique, and book chapters.  

Dr. Dolber believes that historical inquiry can help develop strategies for contemporary movements for social justice. His current research examines the more recent history of digital policymaking, and the ways in which discourses about technology have shaped political alliances and outcomes. He is also interested in the relationship between labor in the cultural industries, the academy, and the so-called "gig economy."   

Dr. Dolber has been a Congressional fellow in the Office of Rep. Diane Watson, and has worked with numerous labor unions and organizations. He is the winner of the Margaret A. Blanchard Best Dissertation Prize, and recipient of the Moore Institute Visiting Research Fellowship at NUI Galway.

Dr. Dolber was previously assistant professor at SUNY College at Oneonta.


Media and Culture in the U.S. Jewish Labor Movement: Sweating for Democracy in the Interwar Era. (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017) 


Scholarly Articles

Pressing Pause: Critical Reflections from the History of Media Studies: Brian Dolber, Andrew O’Baoill. Triple C. Journal for a Global Sustainable Information Society, (2018), 16:1, pp. 264-279

Blindspots and Blurred Lines: Dallas Smythe, the Audience Commodity, and the Transformation of Labor in the Digital Age. Sociology Compass (2016), 10:9, pp. 747755.

Commodifying Alternative Media Audiences: A Historical Case Study of the Jewish Daily Forward. Communication, Culture & Critique (2016), 9:2, pp. 175-192. 

Strange Bedfellows: Yiddish Socialist Radio and the Collapse of Broadcasting Reform in the United States, 1927-1938. Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television (2013), 33:2, pp. 289-307.

Introduction: Laboring the Academy: New Directions for Communications Studies in the Economic Crisis. Special Issue: Media and the Economic Crisis. Brian Dolber and Mark Hayward, Eds. Democratic Communiqué, (2011), 24:1, pp. 17-20. 

From Socialism to ‘Sentiment’: Towards a Political Economy of Communities, Counterpublics and Their Media Through Jewish Working Class History. Communication Theory, (2011), 21:1, pp. 90-109.

A Rock and a Hard Place: The CWA's Approach to Media Policy, 1984-2003. Democratic Communiqué, (2008), 22:2, pp. 66-84.  

Unmaking ‘Hegemonic Jewishness’: Anti-Communism, Gender Politics, and Communication in the ILGWU, 1924-1934. Race, Gender & Class, (2008), 15:1, pp. 188-203.

Book Chapters

‘Justice, Justice You Shall Pursue’: The Jewish Funds for Justice’s Prophetic Battle Against Glenn Beck. In Prophetic Approaches to Popular Media: Critical Theory and Practical Application. Edited by Robert Woods, Jr. and Kevin Healey. New York: Peter Lang, 2013.

Informationism as Ideology: Technological Myths in the Network Neutrality Debate. In Regulating the Web: Network Neutrality and the Fate of the Open Internet, edited by Zachary Stiegler. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2013. 

Brian Dolber, Ph.D.