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School of English and Media Studies

2018 Staff Retreat

Dr Nicholas Holm staff profile picture

Contact details +64 (04) 801 5799  ext. 63544

Dr Nicholas Holm PhD

Senior Lecturer

School of English and Media Studies

Nick joined the School of English and Media Studies in 2013, having completed his doctorate at McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada in 2012. He apparently has trouble keeping his research interests in check, but when forced will suggest that he studies the political nature of popular culture, in particlar the role of humour as an aesthetic category, and the interrelation of aesthetic theory, political economics and popular culture. He is currently working on a manuscript addressing the emergence of novel forms of humour into the mass media of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries and the manner in which those new forms of humour might be thought to act and intervene in the political formations of liberal capitalism. This project involves wedding close analyses of contemporary media humour texts, such as Family Guy, The Office, Jackass and The Daily Show, with a reformulation of the aesthetic tradition of Cultural Marxism and the Modernist Avant Garde.

Nick has also recently published articles on the adaptation of Japanese film, conspiracy theory and squirrels, presented conference papers on the political legacy of covers of John Lennon's "Working Class Hero," nature as a form of popular culture, and the posibilities and limitations of political critique in sci-fi cinema and prepared articles on Marvel Comics for an upcoming encyclopedia of comic books. Nick is the co-ordinator for the external iteration of Introduction to Media Studies (154.101), and teaches the internal and extramural versions of Adverting and Society (154.202) and Popular Culture and the Media (154.203).

Nick is interested in supervising, or just chatting about, any projects addressing humour (and related concepts of parody, satire, irony and comedy), advertising, aesthetic theory, Avant Garde-ism, Cultural Marxism, comic books, cultural studies more broadly or any combination of the above.

Nicholas Holm is a Lecturer in Media Studies at Massey University, New Zealand where he teaches courses in popular culture and advertising. His research addresses the political role of aesthetics, in particular the aesthetics of popular culture, which he has explored in published articles in terms of mediated humour, urban wildlife, and the transnational adaptation of film. His current research addresses the political aesthetics of media humour and its relation to liberal politics. Nick teaches Introduction to Media Studes, Popular Culture and the Media and Advertising and Society.

More about me...View less...


Contact details

  • Ph: 04 979 3544
    Location: 7C 45, Block 7
    Campus: Wellington


  • Master of Arts (Cultural Studies and Critical Theory) - McMaster University (2008)
  • Doctor of Philosophy (English and Cultural Studies) - McMaster University (2012)

Research Expertise

Research Interests

Cultural and Media Theory, Humour, Advertising, Popular Culture, Political Aesthetics, Frankfurt School, Marxism and Post-Marxism, Eco-Criticism.


21st Century Citizenship

Area of Expertise

Field of research codes
Communication and Media Studies (200100): Consumption and Everyday Life (200203): Cultural Studies (200200): Cultural Theory (200204): Languages, Communication And Culture (200000): Media Studies (200104): Screen and Media Culture (200212)


Humour, Satire, Comedy, Advertising, Cultural Theory, Cultural Studies, Urban Wildlife, Marxism and Marxist Theory, Capitalism, Comic Books, Cartoons.

Research Projects

Summary of Research Projects

Position Current Completed
Project Leader 1 3

Research Outputs


Holm, NH. (2017). Rick and Morty, or the cultural logic of late animation.
[Internet publication]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2016). Humour as edge-work: Aesthetics, joke-work and tendentiousness in Tosh.0 (or Daniel Tosh and the mystery of the missing joke-work). Comedy Studies. 7(1), 108-121
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH., & Veldstra, C. (2015). Introduction: You can't be serious. Comedy Studies. 6(1), 1-3
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2015). Consider the possum: Foes, anti-animals, and colonists in paradise. Animal Studies Journal. 4(1), 32-56 Retrieved from http://ro.uow.edu.au/asj/vol4/iss1/4/
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH., & Holm, N. (2010). Review of Aesthetics and Its Discontents, by Jacques Rancière. Culture Machine. 11(1)
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2012). Consider the squirrel: Freaks, vermin, and value in the ruin(s) of nature. Cultural Critique: an international journal of cultural studies. 80(1), 56-95 Retrieved from http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/cultural_critique/v080/80.holm.html
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2011). The distribution of the nonsensical and the political aesthetics of humour. Transformations. (19), Unpaginated Retrieved from http://www.transformationsjournal.org/journal/issue_19/article_04.shtml
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2011). Reassessing the right to laughter: Humour, dissent and the liberal imagination. AntePodium: online journal of world affairs. 16(1), 1-42 Retrieved from http://www.victoria.ac.nz/atp/articles/pdf/Holm-2011.pdf
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2011). Ex(or)cising the spirit of Japan: Ringu, the ring, and the persistence of Japan. Journal of Popular Film and Television. 39(4), 183-192
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2009). Conspiracy theorizing surveillance: Considering modalities of paranoia and conspiracy in surveillance studies. Surveillance and Society. 7(1), 36-48 Retrieved from http://surveillance-and-society.org/ojs/index.php/journal/article/viewFile/conspiracy/conspiracy
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2007). F--- you, I won’t do what you tell me: A dritical qnalysis of rebellion, revolution and the dionysian in popular music. New Zealand Journal of Media Studies (Online). 10(1), 24-30 Retrieved from http://www.nzmediastudies.org.nz/articles/10_1_004_HOLMa.PDF
[Journal article]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2013). Evil Media. Media International Australia Incorporating Culture and Policy: quarterly journal of media research and resources. 1(147), 164-165
[Book Review]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2012). Book review: Introduction to antiphilosophy, by Boris Groys, translation by D. Fernbach (2012). Culture Machine. , 1-6Retreived from http://www.culturemachine.net/index.php/cm/article/view/491/513
[Book Review]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2012). Book review: Critique on Critique a review of On critique: A sociology of emancipation by Boltanski (2011). Cultural Studies Review. 18(2), 341-346Retreived from http://epress.lib.uts.edu.au/journals/index.php/csrj/article/view/2774
[Book Review]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2012). Book review: The people’s media critique reveiw of Swift Viewing: The popular life of subliminal influence by Charles R. Acland (2011). Reviews in Cultural Theory. 3(1), 62-66Retreived from http://www.reviewsinculture.com/?r=86
[Book Review]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N. (2010). Book review: Aesthetics and its discontents, by Jacques Rancière (2009). Culture Machine. , 1-10Retreived from http://www.culturemachine.net/index.php/cm/article/view/393/411
[Book Review]Authored by: Holm, N.


Holm, NH. (2017). The politics of deadpan in Australasian satire. In . Davis, Jessica M. (Ed.) Satire and Politics: The Interplay of Heritage and Practice. (pp. 103 - 124). : Springer
[Chapter]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, N.(2017). Humour as Politics The Political Aesthetics of Contemporary Comedy. : Palgrave Macmillan
[Authored Book]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2016). Consider the lawnmower: Aesthetics, politics and entanglements of urban nature. In NH. Holm, & S. Taffel (Eds.) Ecological Entanglements in the Anthropocene. (pp. 17 - 33).
[Chapter]Authored by: Holm, N.Edited by: Holm, N.
taffel, SA., & holm, NHF. (2016). Ecological crises, nonhumans and the age of man. In NHF. Holm, & SA. Taffel (Eds.) Ecological entanglements in the anthropocene. (pp. ix - xxv). : Lexington Books
[Chapter]Authored by: Holm, N., Taffel, S.Edited by: Holm, N., Taffel, S.
Taffel, SA., & Holm, NHF. (Eds.) (2016). Ecological entanglements in the Anthropocene. Lanham: Lexington Books
[Edited Book]Edited by: Holm, N., Taffel, S.
Holm, NH.(2016). The Political (UN)Consciousness of Contemporary American Humour.
[Discussion Paper]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2016). Art for Fun and Profit: The Political Aesthetics of Advertising. In . James F. Hamilton, R. Bodle, & E. Korin (Eds.) Explorations in Critical Studies of Advertising,. (pp. 97 - 109). : Routledge
[Chapter]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH.(2016). Advertising and consumer society: A critical introduction. : Palgrave
[Authored Book]Authored by: Holm, N.


Holm, N. (2012). Dissent in jest: The political aesthetics of contemporary media humour. (Doctoral Thesis, McMaster University)
[Doctoral Thesis]Authored by: Holm, N.


Taffel, SA., Holm, N., Duncan, P., Veale, K., Huffer, I., & Randell-Moon, H.(2017, December). Cultures of Capitalism: CSAA 2017. .
[Conference]Authored by: Duncan, P., Holm, N., Huffer, I., Taffel, S., Veale, K.
Holm, NH. (2017, July). “Satire and the (unfulfilled) promise of popular politics.”. Presented at International Society for Humor Studies 2017. Montréal, Canada.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
holm, . (2016, May). “‘Against the Assault of Laughter’: Differentiating Critical and Resistant Humour.”. Presented at Comedy and Critical Thought: Laughter as Resistance?. University of Kent.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH."Against the Assault of Laughter": Differentiating Critical and Resistant Humour. . Kent, United Kingdom
[Conference Paper]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2015, November). Marxism as Minor Culture: The Americans and Marxism in the 21st Century. Presented at Minor Culture: Conference of the Cultural Studies Association of Australasia. University of Melbourne.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH.(2015, April). Working with Nature: Understanding Entanglements of Humans and Nonhumans in the Anthropocene. .
[Conference]Authored by: Holm, N.Edited by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2015, February). The Politics of Deadpan in Australasian Satire. Presented at Association for the Study of Australian Literature Mini-Conference 2015. University of New England, NSW, Australia.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2015, February). "Against the Assault of Laughter": Critique and the Politics of Humour. Presented at Australasian Humour Studies Network Conference. Flinders University, Adelaide.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2014, June). “Veep, the thick of it, and the Politics of (transnational) humour”. Presented at Crossroads in Cultural Studies Conference 2014. Tampere, Finland.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2014, February). Humour as Edge-Work: Joke Work, Tendentiousness and Tosh.0. Presented at 1 Australasian Humour Studies Network 20 th Annual Colloquium on ‘Anything Goes?’. National Library of New Zealand.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH., Ingleton, PB., & Veldstra, CW.(2013, May). You can't be serious: 2013 John Douglas Taylor conference. .
[Conference]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2012, May). Unicorn 2.0: Logics of Abstraction in Humour Meme Culture. Presented at Canadian Communications Association. University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2012, July). We Won't Take it Anymore: Revolutionary Subjects in Contemporary Cinema. Presented at Crossroads in Cultural Studies. Université Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2013, May). A Working Class Hero (was something to be?): Political Identity and Political Affect. Presented at International Association for the Study of Popular Music - Canada 2013 Conference. McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.
Holm, NH. (2013, May). Nature as Popular Culture. Presented at "You Can't Be Serious" 2013 John Douglas Taylor Conference. McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario.
[Conference Oral Presentation]Authored by: Holm, N.

Supervision and Teaching

Summary of Doctoral Supervision

Position Current Completed
Co-supervisor 2 0

Courses Coordinated

Current Doctoral Supervision

Co-supervisor of:

  • Barira Nazir - Doctor of Philosophy
    Revisiting Pakistani Anglophone Fiction: A Reception oriented Study
  • Louisa Berry - Doctor of Philosophy
    Is the fringe the future? The challenge of imagining alternative ways of being from within neoliberal capitalism

Media and Links


  • 01 Apr 2014 - Other
    The Wheat from the Chaff
    interviewed for history of Chaff Student Newspaper

Head of School

Associate Professor Jenny Lawn

Email: J.M.Lawn@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 09 213 6337

Administration staff

Denise Bourne
Administrator - Manawatu
Email: D.Bourne@massey.ac.nz
Tel:  06 951 6112

Joanne Ervine
Senior Administrator - Auckland
Email: J.Ervine@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 09 213 6909

Janet Lowe
Business Services Manager - Manawatu
Email: J.M.Lowe@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 06 951 7752

Julie McKenzie
Academic Programme Administrator
Email: J.A.McKenzie@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 06 951 7421

Anne Meredith
Academic Programme Administrator - "Writing Papers"
Email: A.M.Meredith@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 06 951 7548

Kaitautoko Māori

Dr Tina Makereti
Email: T.R.Makereti@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 06 951 7494

Honorary research fellows

These academics are honorary research fellows of our school:

Dr Doreen D'Cruz
Associate Professor Joe Grixti
Dr Judith Dell Panny
Professor Russell Poole
Dr John Ross

College of Humanities and Social Sciences support staff

Claire Grant
Shared Campus Secretary - Wellington
Email: C.Grant@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 04 979 3597

Claire Jowsey
Shared Campus Secretary - Auckland
Email: C.Jowsey@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 09 212 7057

Marissa Penfold
Shared Campus Secretary - Auckland
Email: M.Penfold@massey.ac.nz
Tel: 09 213 6086

Massey Contact Centre Mon - Fri 8:30am to 5:00pm 0800 MASSEY (+64 6 350 5701) TXT 5222 contact@massey.ac.nz Web chat Staff Alumni News Māori @ Massey