Skip to main content

Sharp, Cassandra Dr

Associate Professor

  • Verified Member - Legal Intersections Research Centre
  • School of Law
  • Faculty of Business and Law

Overview


Cassandra Sharp is Associate Professor in the School of Law and the Managing Editor for Law Text Culture. She is also a member of the Legal Intersections Research Centre. 

Her research is based in cultural legal studies, and focuses on interdisciplinary explorations of law as it is constructed in the public imagination through popular texts. Cassandra has interdisciplinary qualitative expertise in the field of law, popular culture and public perception, with a particular interest in the interaction between individuals, communities, and governments. 

Her contributions to the field to date has been exploring cultural legal studies knowledge in the intersecting areas of law, public consciousness and narrative. Most recently this has involved drawing on cultural studies, linguistic theory, psychology, and legal theory to interrogate public interaction with the law, as manifested within the use of social media responses to terrorism and social crises.

Cassandra is the co-editor of Cultural Legal Studies: Law's Popular Cultures and the Metamorphosis of Law (Routledge, 2015) (with Marett Leiboff, UOW), and the author of Hashtag Jurisprudence: Narratives of Terror and Legality on Twitter (forthcoming, Edward Elgar). 

In 2015, Cassandra was the recipient of a national OLT Citation for 'Outstanding Contribution to Teaching and Learning' as part of the First Year Law Integration Team 

publications and research.

Top Publications


Research Overview


  • Understanding the motivations, expectations and values of individuals as they respond to law in key crisis moments, is the essence of the work Cassandra endeavours to pursue, and it forms the basis for the grounding of each of her research projects, the most current of which are detailed below.

    Research Projects: 


    Hashtag Jurisprudence: Narratives of Terror and Legality on Twitter
     (sole CI)
    This project experientially speaks to a particular moment in time, when stories of insecurity were (and still are) provoking anxieties about law, and fuelling desires for particular forms of justice. Utilising empirical analysis, the project seeks to offer a theory of law that binds together the experience of terror, the encounter of legality, and the expression of emotion all within the narrative forms of social media. Using terrorism as a case study, the project explores key global terror events as provocative for individuals to express their responses spontaneously, immediately and emotionally on social media. Monograph based on empirical research expected Dec 2020 - Edward Elgar.

    Public (mis)trust in government and the law: an analysis of social media posts in the time of COVID19. (lead CI with Prof Kieran Tranter (QUT), Dr Shoshana Dreyfus, Dr Tracey Woolrych (UOW))
    This project aims to conduct the first comprehensive study of Australian public responses to law and democratic governing during the global crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic. Using an innovative multi-disciplinary method to analyse social media commentary related to COVID-19, the project expects to create new knowledge about how perceptions of law and democratic governing are constituted in contemporary Australian culture. Expected outcomes include a new framework for understanding the critique evident in public reactions to government responses and policy development. The project will have benefit for Australian policy makers by creating insight into how diverse communities experienced and responded to their actions during this crisis.

    She speaks, but who hears? Australian women’s voices, listening, law reform (with Prof Nan Seuffert, Dr Sarah Ailwood and Dr Rachel Loney-Howes - UOW).
    Cassandra's involvement in this project is to lead the investigation of the amplification of women’s voices through social media posts, and particularly comments attached to twitter hashtags related to our three areas of inquiry (#metoo, #letherspeak, #stopsilencingblackwomen and #domesticviolence). These are high profile social media campaigns engaging with issues on violence against women that have provoked a high level of public engagement. Social media platforms have not only transformed the way women communicate with one another, but they have also amplified and intensified the way women can interpret, critique and legitimise the development and application of policy within our communities. While #MeToo and #domesticviolence have had global origins and engagement, the commentary of each that is particularly Australian will be instructive in identifying whose voices are heard in these debates. The distinctly Australian campaign #letherspeak is included because of alignment with our objective of understanding how and when women are listened to.


    Global Challenges Seed Grant for ‘Hashtagging Terror and Hate: Citizen Responses on Social Media’ ($13000) 
    (lead CI with Dr Shoshana Dreyfus, Dr Roba Abbas, Dr Tracey Woolrych, Dr Peter Leeson, Kate Tubridy and Yvonne Apolo)
    This collaborative project aims to develop an interdisciplinary methodology to analyse people’s attitudes to and expectations of government policies and actions in the immediate aftermath of terrorist attacks. In the moments following terror attacks, citizens take to social media to share their personal responses in which they articulate ideas about national identity, immigration and race. Indeed, citizens are often much more openly critical in times of heightened emotion. in response to the terror event in a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand 2019, which sparked significant national interest regarding the impact of culturally motivated terrorism on everyday lives, this project seeks to comment on public perception of the legitimacy of government policy/action during such crises. It involves collaborators from law, psychology, linguistics and business as well as PhD students. 

    Cassandra enjoys supervising PhD students, and was recently acknowledged in the UOW HDR Supervision Best Practice publication for her empathy and mentoring PhD students. 
    She currently supervises 8 PhD students, has had 5 PhD completions, and regularly supervises LLB Hons students

Available as Research Supervisor

Selected Publications


Available as Research Supervisor

Potential Supervision Topics


  • Cassandra encourages potential research students in the fields of cultural legal studies, social media research, law and the visual image, law and popular culture, law and comics, law and humanities, law and literature, jurisprudence and legal theory, legal education, and the transformation of legal identity.

Advisees


  • Graduate Advising Relationship

    Degree Research Title Advisee
    Doctor of Philosophy Twitter trials and Facebook justice: community responses to crime in the age of social media Tubridy, Kate
    Doctor of Philosophy The Transformation of Televised Judicial Authority in the Past 25 years: A Lithuanian Perspective Janusiene, Aiste
    Doctor of Philosophy Confronting the ghosts and horrible misdeeds of our past: The National Apology to victims and survivors of institutional child sexual abuse and its relationship to leadership, legitimacy and legacy Bryant, Lachlan
    Doctor of Philosophy The ‘Terrible Beauty’ of Romantic Rebellion: Rebellion, Trauma and the Emergence of a Unique Irish Legality Lingard, Johanna
    Doctor of Philosophy Popular Literature as a Critical Framework for Youth Legal Activism Poole, Kaitlyn
    Doctor of Philosophy Incorporated Legal Character: Is there a Moral to this Story? Murray, Karina
    Doctor of Philosophy Conscientious Relationality or Informationalism? Interrogating legal conceptions of privacy through the pathologised subjectivity of the age of visibility Apolo, Yvonne

Top Publications


Research Overview


  • Understanding the motivations, expectations and values of individuals as they respond to law in key crisis moments, is the essence of the work Cassandra endeavours to pursue, and it forms the basis for the grounding of each of her research projects, the most current of which are detailed below.

    Research Projects: 


    Hashtag Jurisprudence: Narratives of Terror and Legality on Twitter
     (sole CI)
    This project experientially speaks to a particular moment in time, when stories of insecurity were (and still are) provoking anxieties about law, and fuelling desires for particular forms of justice. Utilising empirical analysis, the project seeks to offer a theory of law that binds together the experience of terror, the encounter of legality, and the expression of emotion all within the narrative forms of social media. Using terrorism as a case study, the project explores key global terror events as provocative for individuals to express their responses spontaneously, immediately and emotionally on social media. Monograph based on empirical research expected Dec 2020 - Edward Elgar.

    Public (mis)trust in government and the law: an analysis of social media posts in the time of COVID19. (lead CI with Prof Kieran Tranter (QUT), Dr Shoshana Dreyfus, Dr Tracey Woolrych (UOW))
    This project aims to conduct the first comprehensive study of Australian public responses to law and democratic governing during the global crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic. Using an innovative multi-disciplinary method to analyse social media commentary related to COVID-19, the project expects to create new knowledge about how perceptions of law and democratic governing are constituted in contemporary Australian culture. Expected outcomes include a new framework for understanding the critique evident in public reactions to government responses and policy development. The project will have benefit for Australian policy makers by creating insight into how diverse communities experienced and responded to their actions during this crisis.

    She speaks, but who hears? Australian women’s voices, listening, law reform (with Prof Nan Seuffert, Dr Sarah Ailwood and Dr Rachel Loney-Howes - UOW).
    Cassandra's involvement in this project is to lead the investigation of the amplification of women’s voices through social media posts, and particularly comments attached to twitter hashtags related to our three areas of inquiry (#metoo, #letherspeak, #stopsilencingblackwomen and #domesticviolence). These are high profile social media campaigns engaging with issues on violence against women that have provoked a high level of public engagement. Social media platforms have not only transformed the way women communicate with one another, but they have also amplified and intensified the way women can interpret, critique and legitimise the development and application of policy within our communities. While #MeToo and #domesticviolence have had global origins and engagement, the commentary of each that is particularly Australian will be instructive in identifying whose voices are heard in these debates. The distinctly Australian campaign #letherspeak is included because of alignment with our objective of understanding how and when women are listened to.


    Global Challenges Seed Grant for ‘Hashtagging Terror and Hate: Citizen Responses on Social Media’ ($13000) 
    (lead CI with Dr Shoshana Dreyfus, Dr Roba Abbas, Dr Tracey Woolrych, Dr Peter Leeson, Kate Tubridy and Yvonne Apolo)
    This collaborative project aims to develop an interdisciplinary methodology to analyse people’s attitudes to and expectations of government policies and actions in the immediate aftermath of terrorist attacks. In the moments following terror attacks, citizens take to social media to share their personal responses in which they articulate ideas about national identity, immigration and race. Indeed, citizens are often much more openly critical in times of heightened emotion. in response to the terror event in a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand 2019, which sparked significant national interest regarding the impact of culturally motivated terrorism on everyday lives, this project seeks to comment on public perception of the legitimacy of government policy/action during such crises. It involves collaborators from law, psychology, linguistics and business as well as PhD students. 

    Cassandra enjoys supervising PhD students, and was recently acknowledged in the UOW HDR Supervision Best Practice publication for her empathy and mentoring PhD students. 
    She currently supervises 8 PhD students, has had 5 PhD completions, and regularly supervises LLB Hons students

Selected Publications


Potential Supervision Topics


  • Cassandra encourages potential research students in the fields of cultural legal studies, social media research, law and the visual image, law and popular culture, law and comics, law and humanities, law and literature, jurisprudence and legal theory, legal education, and the transformation of legal identity.

Advisees


  • Graduate Advising Relationship

    Degree Research Title Advisee
    Doctor of Philosophy Twitter trials and Facebook justice: community responses to crime in the age of social media Tubridy, Kate
    Doctor of Philosophy The Transformation of Televised Judicial Authority in the Past 25 years: A Lithuanian Perspective Janusiene, Aiste
    Doctor of Philosophy Confronting the ghosts and horrible misdeeds of our past: The National Apology to victims and survivors of institutional child sexual abuse and its relationship to leadership, legitimacy and legacy Bryant, Lachlan
    Doctor of Philosophy The ‘Terrible Beauty’ of Romantic Rebellion: Rebellion, Trauma and the Emergence of a Unique Irish Legality Lingard, Johanna
    Doctor of Philosophy Popular Literature as a Critical Framework for Youth Legal Activism Poole, Kaitlyn
    Doctor of Philosophy Incorporated Legal Character: Is there a Moral to this Story? Murray, Karina
    Doctor of Philosophy Conscientious Relationality or Informationalism? Interrogating legal conceptions of privacy through the pathologised subjectivity of the age of visibility Apolo, Yvonne
uri icon