Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Communication Studies

Document Type



This project examines the rhetorical impact of Black feminist public pedagogy through the use of digital archives, arguing that Black Women Radicals and the selected YouTubers perform and constitute a space for Black feminist counterpublic pedagogy outside of the university that is rhetorically driven by Black feminist intellectuals. These digital spaces are important for the advancement of Black feminist social movements because they center Black women’s collective voices and visions and provide access to Black feminist movement principles to audiences. I illuminate this argument through an analysis of rhetoric on their website and social media in which I have come to theorize as digital archives. The construction and utilization of digital archives create invaluable sources of public pedagogy because they focus on creating engagement through critical pedagogical praxis and culturally relevant approaches. They also seek to reach wider audiences while prioritizing the inclusion of groups who have been historically excluded from traditional forms of education.

This project employs Black feminist thought, public sphere theory, and critical communication pedagogy as theoretical perspectives to address how Black feminist content creators function as public scholars with the goals of gathering and enlightening Black feminist counterpublics through digital platforms; therefore, this project analyzes the nature, reception, and pedagogical possibilities of original digital content created by Black Women Radicals, Khadija Mbowe, Intelexual Media, and Tee Noir. The creators featured in this project do not believe academics hold authority on Black politics and feminisms. Thus, they work with organizers, activists, and educators outside of the academy to circulate resources and social media materials to be easily accessed by counterpublics. To that end, this particular research demonstrates how the voices, personal experiences, and cultures present in Black feminist digital counterpublic communities matter and should be regarded as knowledge.



Committee Chair

Dr. Bryan McCann

Available for download on Friday, March 28, 2031