Will Straw

The Urban Night

Will Straw is a thought leader in nighttime studies.

He has influenced many students in his official capacity as Professor of Urban Media Studies in the Department of Art History and Communications Studies at Montréal’s McGill University.

Dr. Straw’s reach as a speaker, visiting professor and expert has been amplified through The Urban Night. This website, media feed and interdisciplinary research project focuses on the nocturnal life of cities around the globe.

Plus, Will is a cinephile and scholar on the social and institutional dimensions of popular music.

Spend 24 minutes with Will Straw.

24 minutes from 24HourNation
Season 001, Episode 007

Topic: Share our passion for night studies, trends in the nighttime economy and how the night presents itself in popular culture.
Guest: Will Straw, McGill University
Host: Randall White, 24HourNation
Recording: Jun 10, 2022
Mixed: Jun 17, 2022
Posted: Jun 17, 2022

Will Straw is Professor of Urban Media Studies in the Department of Art History and Communication Studies at McGill University in Montréal, Québéc, Canada.

He has been Visiting Professor at the Open University (Budapest), the National Autonomous University of Mexico and the University of Belgrade. He is also Adjunct Research Professor in the Institute for Comparative Studies in Literature, Art and Culture, Carleton University.

Professor Straw has a Bachelor degree in Film Studies, and postgraduate degrees in Communications Studies. Much of his work has dealt with the social and institutional dimensions of popular music, and with the development of the notion of music scene.

He has a strong interest, as well, in histories of popular music in Montreal, Quebec and Canada.

More recently, Dr. Straw’s research has come to focus on the ways in which the night-time culture of cities is governed, promoted and represented. On the one hand, this takes the form of an interest in new policy instruments adopted by cities so as to acknowledge the role of night-time culture within them.

On the other hand, this interest takes him into the study of narrative forms (in the cinema, journalism and fiction) that treat the night as a distinct “territory” of human experience. Straw maintains a website, theurbannight.com, that tracks developments in night-time urban culture.

Dr. Straw is on the editorial boards of many of the leading journals in several fields, including “Screen,” “Cultural Studies,” “Intermédialités,” “Convergences: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies,” “Space and Culture,” and “Journal of Urban Cultural Studies.

With Kieran Bonner, he co-edits the book series “Culture of Cities” (McGill-Queens University Press). With Bart Beaty, he edits the series “Canadian Cinema” (University of Toronto Press).

For a full list of Dr. Straw’s publications, with links for downloads of many of them, visit his website, willstraw.com

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