Professional website and CV:

Jonathan Branfman researches race, masculinity, and Jewish identity in popular media. His work invites Jewish, feminist, queer, critical race, and media studies to grasp how historical anti-Semitism shapes present-day U.S. visual culture, and how Jewish stars harness this stigma to enter America's core cultural debates.

First book: "Millennial Jewish Stardom: Masculinity, Race, & Queer Glamor." Forthcoming in 2024 with New York University Press.

Upcoming book projects:
"Jews & News Satire: Embodying Candor in the Age of Fake News"
"Passing Fancies: Chimeric Liberation in U.S. Passing Films"

Articles: Jonathan's research has appeared in Television & New Media, the Journal of Modern Jewish Studies, the Journal of Homosexuality, and Frontiers, among others. For instance, to advance intersectional feminist theories of antisemitism, he has analyzed "Jewish-Progressive Conflict" in Frontiers (

Educational publications: To share feminist and queer education beyond academia, Jonathan has likewise published an intersectional LGBTQ children's book, "You Be You! The Kid's Guide to Gender, Sexuality & Family" ( This guide is now translated into 25 languages, including Spanish, Chinese, Arabic, and Yiddish.

Courses: "Passing: Hidden Identities Onscreen" (Fall 22)

Stanford Advisors

2023-24 Courses

All Publications

  • "Plow Him Like a Queen!": Jewish Female Masculinity, Queer Glamor, and Racial Commentary in Broad City TELEVISION & NEW MEDIA Branfman, J. 2020; 21 (8): 842-860
  • Jewy/screwy leading lady: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and the critique of rom-com femininity JOURNAL OF MODERN JEWISH STUDIES Branfman, J. 2020; 19 (1): 71-92
  • Laughing to sexual education: feminist pedagogy of laughter as a model for holistic sex-education SEX EDUCATION-SEXUALITY SOCIETY AND LEARNING Kolenz, K. A., Branfman, J. 2019; 19 (5): 568-581
  • Teaching for Coalition: Dismantling "Jewish-Progressive Conflict" through Feminist and Queer Pedagogy Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies Branfman, J. 2019; 40 (2): 126-166
  • Failed Fatherhood and the "Trap of Ambivalence": Assimilation, Homonormativity, and Effeminophobia in The New Normal JOURNAL OF HOMOSEXUALITY Branfman, J. 2019; 66 (12): 1671-1692


    The New Normal, NBC's 2012 sitcom about gay fathers, contradicts itself: While striving to normalize gay men as respectable parents, the show often mocks feminine gay men as unsuitable parents. I take this "effeminophobic" contradiction as a case study to extend queer theory's critique of LGBTQ assimilation. I read The New Normal through a joint framework linking Lisa Duggan's well-known critique of homonormativity with Zygmunt Bauman's critique of Jewish cultural assimilation. This connection clarifies how the pitfalls of homonormative assimilation, like The New Normal's self-stigmatizing humor, reflect a broader "trap of ambivalence" inherent to assimilation itself. In turn, this insight illustrates how queer theory can benefit from seeking explicitly Jewish perspectives on sexuality. This study also invites queer theory to analyze how sexual difference is co-structured with Jewish difference.

    View details for DOI 10.1080/00918369.2018.1510263

    View details for Web of Science ID 000513580200003

    View details for PubMedID 30235080

  • Relaxing the straight male anus: Decreasing homohysteria around anal eroticism SEXUALITIES Branfman, J., Stiritz, S., Anderson, E. 2018; 21 (1-2): 109-127
  • “(Un)Covering” in the Classroom: Managing Stigma Beyond the Closet Feminist Teacher Branfman, J. 2017; 26 (1): 72-82
  • Teaching Men's Anal Pleasure: Challenging Gender Norms with "Prostage" Education AMERICAN JOURNAL OF SEXUALITY EDUCATION Branfman, J., Stiritz, S. 2012; 7 (4): 404-428