Associate Professor of Media, Culture and Communication
Mara Mills works at the intersection of disability studies and media studies. Her research and teaching interests include communication history (especially related to telephones and reading practices), science and technology studies, disability theory, and mobile media studies. Her first book (On the Phone: Deafness and Communication Engineering), forthcoming from Duke University Press, argues the significance of phonetics and deaf education to the emergence of "communication engineering" in early twentieth-century telephony. This concept and set of practices later gave rise to information theory, digital coding, and cybernetics. Her second book project, Print Disability and New Reading Formats, examines the reformatting of print over the course of the past century by blind and other print disabled readers, with a focus on Talking Books and electronic reading machines. It is under contract with the University of Minnesota Press for the new Manifold print/digital hybrid series. With Rebecca Sanchez, she has also co-edited a new edition of And No Birds Sing, Pauline Leader's memoir about life as a deaf working-class runaway among the bohemians of Greenwich Village in the 1920s (Gallaudet University Press, 2016).
Mills is on the steering committees for the cross-school minors in Science and Society and Disability Studies. She is co-chair of the NYU Council for the Study of Disability. She is a member of the executive council (2016-2018) of the Society for the History of Technology, as well as a founding editor of the journal Catalyst: Feminism, Theory, Technoscience. More information can be found at her website.
Image credit: Claudia Peppel, ICI Berlin 2013