This is a photo of Robert Thompson

Robert Thompson

Director, Bleier Center for Television & Popular Culture

Trustee Professor

  • Television, Radio & Film

Also teaches in:

  • Mass Communications
  • Media Studies
  • Goldring Arts Journalism and Communications

Contact Information

Office Location

430-A Newhouse 3


  • Ph.D. Northwestern University
  • M.A. Northwestern University
  • B.A. University of Chicago


  • Media Criticism
  • Popular Culture
  • Television History
  • Television Programming

Dubbed a "pop culture ambassador" by the Associated Press, Robert Thompson has contributed to hundreds of radio and TV programs and publications.

He is the founding director of the Bleier Center for Television and Popular Culture and a Trustee Professor of Television and Popular Culture. He was a visiting professor for six summers at Cornell University and served for nine years as professor and director of the N.H.S.I. Television and Film Institute at Northwestern University.

Thompson is the general editor of an ongoing series of books about television published by Syracuse University Press. He is the former president of the National Popular Culture Association and lectures across the country on the subject of television and popular culture. In 1991 and 1992, he was awarded the Stephen H. Coltrin Award for Excellence in Communication Theory by the International Radio & Television Society.

Thompson is the author or editor of five books: "Television's Second Golden Age" (Continuum, 1996); "Prime Time, Prime Movers" (Little, Brown, 1992); "Adventures on Prime Time" (Praeger, 1990); and "Television Studies" (Praeger 1989).

He has been interviewed by a wide range of media outlets, including CBS's "60 Minutes," "48 Hours," "The Early Show" and "The Evening News with Dan Rather"; NBC's "Dateline," "Today" and "Later Today"; ABC's "20/20," "World News Tonight" and "Good Morning America"; PBS's "Newshour"; MSNBC's "Headlines & Legends" and "Playback"; CNN's "Newsstand"; CNBC's "Upfront Tonight with Geraldo Rivera"; Fox News Channel's "O'Reilly Factor"; NPR's "All Things Considered," "Morning Edition," "Talk of the Nation," "Fresh Air," "On the Media" and "Anthem"; The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Time, Newsweek Fortune, TV Guide and Variety.