Desmond Hassing, M.A.

Email: [email protected] | Office: AL-330

An enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and a San Diego native, Desmond Hassing is a Ph.D. student in the University of California, San Diego Department of Theatre and Dance. After a long career at Grossmont College, Desmond received a B.A. in Youth Theatre and a MA in Theatre from San Diego State University where his research focused on models of American Indian representation in modern media in 20th Century America (focusing primarily on the American Comic book between the years 1938 and 1975) and the effects of such representations on US Federal Indian policy.

As a Ph.D. student, Hassing’s research interests focus on how the iconography of the Hollywood Indian trope in comic books, advertising, and minor league baseball mascots during the 20th Century served to aid the construction of Western American Identity and how the companies and institution that have deployed this iconography throughout their history adapt as the narrative they create is challenged by those seeking to generate a new sense of National Identity in the 21st Century.

A Board Trustee for TYPA (Teenage Youth Performing Arts), a San Diego theatre company dedicated to promoting creative leadership by teenage artists, Hassing is also a director and conceptual performance artist. Hassing’s most recent film, #stillhere, has been selected for the First Nations Film and Video Festival, California’s American Indian and Indigenous Film Festival, the One Heart Native Arts and Film Festival, the Wairoa Maori Film Festival, and was a finalist at the 2016 Equality International Film Festival.