My True Crime Obsession
November 18, 2021
I’m Paige Fernandez, the ACLU’s Policing Policy Advocate and I’m so excited to be taking the At Liberty reins for the next month.
I have a confession to make: I have had a true crime obsession most of my life. My job at the ACLU and my organizing work and personal beliefs may make this surprising. I spend my time working to help communities divest from their local police forces and I talk openly about how abolition, to me, feels like the best solution to ending our carceral punishment system and police violence. These two interests feel at odds with each other, but I can’t quite figure out what it is about true crime media that has me so hooked. It’s made me wonder what its popularity has on the American psyche, particularly as it relates to our views on the criminal legal system and policing.
That’s why I’m so thrilled to have Kelli Boling joining us today. Kelli is an Assistant Professor of Advertising and Public Relations in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. After 12 years as a marketing and advertising executive in North and South Carolina, Boling received her Ph.D. at the University of South Carolina in Mass Communication. Her research focuses on the audience reception of media, specifically media depiction and reception by traditionally marginalized audiences based on race and gender.