Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Elizabeth Hodges

Second Advisor

Dr. Marcel Cornis-Pope

Third Advisor

Harrison Fletcher


This thesis examines the birth, rise in popularity, and evolution of the video essay, a subgenre of the essay found recently in online literary journals. Chapter one provides a brief history of the alphabetic essay as it expands to include photo essays, audio essays, and essay-films. The second chapter outlines the history of the online literary journal and John Bresland’s role in the introduction of the video essay as it appears in online journals. Chapter three contains an examination of the way image, text, and sound function in video essays and the tools and strategies essayists are using to create them. The fourth chapter is composed of three case studies of Bresland’s work in an attempt to analyze the continuing evolution and breadth of the form.


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Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission


Available for download on Saturday, May 08, 2021