Professor Soraya Murray is an interdisciplinary scholar who focuses on contemporary visual culture, with particular interest in contemporary art, cultural studies and games. Murray holds a Ph.D. in art history and visual studies from Cornell University, and an MFA in Studio Art from the University of California, Irvine.
An Associate Professor in the Film + Digital Media Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz, she is also principal faculty in the Digital Arts + New Media MFA Program, and the Art + Design: Games + Playable Media Program.
Her writings are published in Art Journal, Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art, CTheory, Public Art Review, Third Text, Gamesbeat and PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art. Her two anthologized essays on the military game genre, gender and race may be found in Gaming Representation: Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Video Games, eds. Jennifer Malkowski and TreaAndrea M. Russworm (Indiana University Press, 2017) and in Zones of Control: Perspectives on Wargaming, eds. Pat Harrigan and Matthew G. Kirschenbaum (The MIT Press, 2016). Her article on the politics of identity and the poetics of form in Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation is published in the media studies journal Kinephanos (2017).
Murray’s book, On Video Games: The Visual Politics of Race, Gender and Space (I.B. Tauris, 2018), considers video games from a visual culture perspective, and how they both mirror and are constitutive of larger societal fears, dreams, hopes and even complex struggles for recognition.