Big Tech TV and the Politics of Gender, Race, and Class in Silicon Valley

  • Tuesday, May 23, 2023 / 7:00 PM - 9:30 PM (PDT)
  • Pollock Theater
  • Screening Format: Sony 2K digital projection
  • With France Winddance Twine and Lisa Parks

Presented in collaboration with UC Press journal Film Quarterly, this timely event examined the growing phenomenon of “Big Tech TV.” Professors France Winddance Twine (Sociology, UCSB) and Lisa Parks (Film and Media Studies, UCSB) discussed the ways Big Tech TV shows such as WeCrashed (starring Jared Leto and Anne Hathaway) and Super Pumped (starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Uma Thurman) represent power dynamics in Silicon Valley workplaces.

This event will build upon an article that Parks and Twine published in the spring 2023 Film Quarterly. Parks and Twine joined Marc Francis, Assistant Editor of Film Quarterly, to discuss topics including structural inequalities in the workplace, the myth of corporate self-regulation, and the culture of CEO worship in Silicon Valley.



France Winddance Twine (Sociology, UCSB)

France Winddance Twine is a Professor of Sociology, a visual artist, and a documentary filmmaker and an internationally recognized feminist scholar whose research has focused on inequalities in Brazil, the UK and the United States. Twine is the Founder and Director of the Technologies for Justice Lab. She is the author and editor of eleven books, including Geek Girls: Inequality and Opportunity in Silicon Valley (New York University Press, 2022), which develops the concept of geek capital. Geek Girls was featured at the Los Angeles’ Times Festival of Books in April of 2023. Twine won the 2020 Distinguished Career award from the American Sociological Association.

Lisa Parks, Ph.D. Professor Comparative Media Studies/Writing Director, Global Media Tehnologies & Cultures Lab MIT. Cambridge MA

Lisa Parks (Film and Media Studies, UCSB)

Lisa Parks is a Distinguished Professor of Film and Media Studies and Director of the Global Media Technologies and Cultures Lab at UC Santa Barbara. She is a media scholar with research on satellite technologies and media globalization; critical studies of media infrastructures; media, militarization, and surveillance; and environmental media. She is currently working on two new books, a co-edited collection entitled Media Backends: Digital Infrastructure and the Politics of Knowing (under contract with University of Illinois Press), and Mixed Signals: Media Infrastructures on the Outskirts. She is a 2018 MacArthur Fellow.


Moderator Marc Francis (Film Quarterly)

Marc Francis is the Assistant Editor of Film Quarterly. In addition, he works in Mastering and Servicing at Paramount Pictures and runs Los Angeles microcinema Wayward Cinema. His current book project, entitled Deviant Repertories, is about the programming of canonical queer films in 1970s and 1980s US art house cinemas, and is under contract with Duke University Press. His most recent essay was included in The Oxford Handbook of Queer Cinema. Other essays have appeared in Camera ObscuraJump CutMedia Fields, and Film Quarterly.

 This event is sponsored by the Carsey-Wolf Center and co-presented with Film Quarterly.


In recognition of the extraordinary accomplishments of the Center’s namesakes, Dick Wolf and Marcy Carsey, the Carsey-Wolf Center is committed to examining television as an institution, industry, and cultural form. In our post-network, multi-channel, multi-media environment, understanding television demands understanding its past as well as its future, through exploration of individual episodes, mini-series, and documentaries.