Skip to main content
Indiana University Bloomington

subpage header image

Marsha Horsley

Marsha Horsley

B.A. Summa Cum Laude, University of California at Los Angeles (Women’s Studies and Education)
M.A. Claremont Graduate University (Women’s Studies with a Certificate in Africana Studies) M.Ed. Claremont Graduate University (Curriculum, Instruction, Multimedia and Urban Education)




Bio:  Marsha N. Horsley is a Ph.D. candidate and Associate Instructor in the department of African American and African Diaspora Studies. Her research explores the crucial nexus of race and eroticism in popular culture; Black female pain and pleasure; and the wounding of female figure in Black Visual Culture.

Teaching and Research Interests: Visual Culture; Black Sexualities; Pedagogy and Black Feminist Thought; Female Pleasure; Popular Culture; Radical Sexual Economies; Black Feminism, Queer of Color Critique and Theory; Feminist Media; Sonic Culture; Music Videos; Hip-Hop and Performance Studies.

Dissertation Committee: Dr. L.H. Stallings (chair), Dr. Michael Martin, Dr. Maisha Wester, Dr. Phoebe Wolfskill
Dissertation Abstract
“Nasty Girls: (Re)claiming the Black Freak in Music Videos and Sonic Culture”
This dissertation interrogates the ways in which Black female music artists use the trope of the “freak” to trouble visual and sonic representations of Black women’s bodies, subjectivities, sex, sexualities, and articulations of pleasure. The freak as it has been conceived by the black radical imagination disrupts the still standing “hyper- sexual” and “respectable” woman binary to address distortions that have dispossessed the Black female subject of erotic and pleasurable meaning. This study re-imagines Black sexual paradigms to extend the analysis of pleasure, and to draw on black women’s energy to (re)claim the freak as an affirmative site of radical possibilities.

Teaching Experience (Assistant Instructor, Indiana University, Bloomington)
A278 Contemporary Black Film: Contemporary Black Filmmakers, Summer 2015
A299 Special Topics in Arts and Humanities: The Freak in Black Culture, Spring 2015
A278 Contemporary Black Film: Blacks in Blaxploitation Films, Spring 2014
A277 The Black Image in Early Film from 1903 to 1950s…, Fall 2013
A278 Contemporary Black Film: Blacks in Blaxploitation Films, Summer 2013
A299 Special Topics in Arts and Humanities: Mammies, Mamas and Matriarchs in Black Film and Television, Spring 2012
A131 Early African American and African Diaspora Literature: An Examination Films Adaptations of Novels by Women of African Descent, Summer 2012
Public Speaking, Fall 2012-Spring 2013