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Dr Simon Weaver
Senior Lecturer

Marie Jahoda 145

Research area(s)

  • Social & cultural theory, the work of Zygmunt Bauman, semiotics
  • Representations of disability & ‘deformity’ in media
  • Comedy, populism and Brexit
  • Racist & offensive humour, humour & rhetoric
  • Sociology of race, ethnicity & racism

Research Interests

Simon’s research interests focus on a number of overlapping areas in sociology, communications and media studies. These are social and cultural theory, the work of Zygmunt Bauman, semiotics, representations of disability and ‘deformity’ in media, racist and offensive humour, humour and rhetoric, and the sociology of race, ethnicity and racism.

Most recently, Simon has been researching comedy about Brexit, the relationship between comedy and populism, and the ironies and ambiguities of Brexit discourse. This forms the subject of his latest book, The Rhetoric of Brexit Humour: Comedy, Populism and the EU Referendum (Routledge, 2021). 

Research grants and projects


‘Beyond a Joke’: Comedy and Critical Thought
Funder: Brunel University London: Research Seminar Series Award
Duration: October 2018 - May 2019

Seminar Series

The Rhetoric of Racist Humour: Analyzing the role of humour in racism
Funder: Economic and Social Research Council
Duration: April 2009 - March 2010

Postdoctoral Fellowship

Project details


Jokers, Creativity and Change: A Critical Analysis of the Role of the Joker in Organisations. 


Satire, Populism and Brexit

Funder: Centre for Global Lives (CGL), Brunel Univerity London

Duration: March to July 2019

Examining ‘Race’, Racism and Representation: An audience reception study of the comedy of Sacha Baron Cohen

Funder: Brunel Research Initiative & Enterprise Fund 2013/14 (BRIEF award), Brunel University London

DurationJanuary 2014 - March 2015