Love Gaga? Take the College Course

The University of South Carolina at Columbia will be offering a course dedicated to Lady Gaga, which will be called “Lady Gaga and the Sociology of Fame.” The class will by taught by Mathuew Deflem this coming spring semester.
The New York Times reports that Deflem is a huge Lady Gaga fan, who owns over 300 of her records and CDs, has attended more than 28 of her concerts and runs a fan website. He has met the star several times, but is not in anyway connected to her management. “I will get the word out to her that I’m doing the course,” he said, “but it might be logistically too difficult for her to come” due to her spring tour schedule.
While the Times article focuses on Mr. Deflem’s enthusiasm as a fan, it is worthwhile to note that the woman once known as Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta and her rise to fame is a fascinating topic of study. As an performance artist, her work combines tropes from a wide range of sources while indulging in absurdism, yet her over-the-top antics seem to divert attention from her personal life. There is the reception of her work, and the media attention it receives, which are an excellent case-study for Deflem’s sociology work. There’s no doubt that this course will have a long wait-list.
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