Geoff Stahl

Dr Geoff Stahl profile picture

Senior Lecturer School of English, Film, Theatre and Media Studies


Teaching in 2019

Research interests

Subcultures, scenes, art worlds, bohemias, popular music, cities, cultural spaces, semiotics, advertising, cultural economies, cultural geography, popular culture, creative/cultural labour, food.


BA McGill, MA McGill, PhD McGill

Dr Geoff Stahl received his PhD in Communications from the Department of Art History and Communications Studies at McGill University, Montreal.  He was a post-Doctoral Fellow at both Humboldt University in Berlin and the Advanced Cultural Studies Institute of Sweden (ACSIS), Linköping University.  His research is focused on the complex nature of cultural production in the city, and in particular on the social relations and systems of representation associated with urban creative labour and music making.  He is interested in urban semiotics, popular music, cultural geography, advertising, and has published articles on scenes and subcultures. He continues his research on the creative life of cities in the context of Montreal, Berlin and Wellington. He has also recently published in the area of food and media studies.

Current research projects

Cultural history of wine, coffee and craft beer in Wellington

Areas of supervision

  • Cultural Production in the City.
  • Social Relations and Systems of Representation associated with Urban Creative Labour.
  • Advertising.
  • Semiotics.
  • Food Studies
  • Cultural Economies.
  • Popular Music.
  • Cultural Geography.
  • Social Networks.
  • Urban Studies.

Major achievements

  • Dancecult, Editorial Board (2012-present)
  • Popular Music, Editorial Board (2014-2017)
  • New Zealand Journal of Media Studies, Editorial Board (2012-2018)
  • Executive Member, International Association for the Study of Popular Music (IASPM). (2003-2009)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (at Humboldt University, Berlin). (2003-2005)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Advanced Centre for Cultural Studies in Sweden (at Linköping University). (2005)

Selection of publications


Made in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand: Studies in Popular Music. Shelley Brunt and Geoff Stahl, Eds. New York: Routledge (2018).

Poor, But Sexy: Reflections on Berlin Scenes. Geoff Stahl, Ed. Bern: Peter Lang, 2014.

Understanding Media Studies. Tony Schirato, Angi Buettner, Thierry Jutel, Geoff Stahl. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 2009.

Forthcoming Books:

Nocturnes: Popular Music and the Night, co-edited with Giacomo Bottà (Palgrave, expected 2018).

Book Chapters:

“Wellington Woes: Urban Melancholy and Music-Making.” Made in Australia and New Zealand: Studies in Popular Music. Shelley Brunt and Geoff Stahl, Eds. Routledge 2018.

“On the Scene: Making Music in Creative Cities.” Meaning, Ideology and Identity: An Interdisciplinary Perspective. Michael Hemmingsen & J.L. Shaw, Eds. Kolkata: Punthi Pustak, 2014.

“Advertising: Mapping the ‘New and Improved’ Mediascape.” Being Cultural. Bruce M.Z. Cohen, Ed. Auckland: Pearson Education, 2012.

“’DIY or DIT!’ Tales of Making Music in a Creative Capital.” Home, Land and Sea: Situating Music in Aotearoa New Zealand. Glenda Kearn and Tony Mitchell, Eds. Auckland: Pearson Education, 2011.

“The Mile-End Hipster: Montreal's Modern Day Folk Devil.” Orte - Situationen - Atmosphären. Beate Binder, Moritz Ege, Anja Schwanhäußer, Jens Wietschorke, Eds. Frankfurt am Main/New York: Campus Verlag, 2010.

Encyclopedia & Handbook Entries:

“Rock Music and Place.” The Bloomsbury Handbook of Rock Music Research, Allan Moore, Ed. New York: Bloomsbury (expected early 2019).

“From Subculture to Scene.” The Routledge Urban Media Companion, Deborah Stevenson and Zlatan Krajina, Eds. New York: Routledge (expected early 2019).

“Urban Semiotics.” The Encyclopedia of Urban Studies. Ray Hutchison, Ed. London: Sage, 2009.

Journal Articles:

“Making a Mockery of Meat: Translating Texture and Failings of the ‘Flesh.’” Journal of Asia-Pacific Popular Culture 2.2 (December 2017): 184-204.

Rochow, Katie and Geoff Stahl. “The Scene and the Unseen: Mapping the (Affective) Rhythms of Wellington and Copenhagen.” Imaginations: The Visuality of Scenes. 7.2 (March 2017). DOI 10.17742/IMAGE.VOS.7-2.7.

Selection of recent conference papers

“We Have Never Been Urban: Experimental Music-Making, DIY Politics and the Aestheticization of Place.” KISMIF Conference, Porto, Portugal, July 2018

“When Night Fails: Wellington’s Night-Time Economy in Crisis.” Biennial Meeting of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music (IASPM), Kassel, Germany, June 2018.

“Liquid City: The Craft Beer Scene in Wellington, New Zealand.” Crossroads: Cultural Studies Conference, Sydney, Australia, December 2016.

“Beyond Beef? Meat Analogues and Reconstituted Culinary Hegemonies.” Mediating the Real, Otago University, Dunedin, New Zealand August 2016.

“Musicmaking and its Ethical Dilemmas and Dramas: Re-Thinking the City through its Musical Scenes.” IASPM-ANZ, Otago University, Dunedin, New Zealand, December 2014.


Teaching in 2019