Graduation Date

Spring 2017

Document Type



Master of Arts degree with a major in Sociology

Committee Chair Name

Dr. Jennifer Eichstedt

Committee Chair Affiliation

HSU Faculty or Staff

Second Committee Member Name

Dr. Mary Virnoche

Second Committee Member Affiliation

HSU Faculty or Staff

Third Committee Member Name

Dr. Meredith Conover-Williams

Third Committee Member Affiliation

HSU Faculty or Staff

Subject Categories



This research is based on a content analysis of the meaning making in Steven Universe cartoon fandom forum threads, media message board comments, and online reviews posted between November 2013 (the show’s initial air date) and November 2016. My analysis examines the fan negotiations of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class from an intersectional feminist perspective. Unlike other qualitative analyses of cartoons that focus on researcher analysis of media messages, this research focuses on meaning making and identity formation among fans. I found that Steven Universe provides fans with opportunities for meaning making and validation, especially underrepresented populations. Fans negotiate identities and use representations of their own social identities to make meaning in their own lives.

Citation Style