Profile

Theodora Sutton is an ESRC DTP Postdoctoral Research Fellow.

Theodora completed her DPhil at the Oxford Internet Institute in 2021. For her doctoral research, she studied a community of “digital detoxers” at a summer camp for adults and digital detox retreat in Northern California. This camp offered a way to better understand Western techno-anxiety and fears of digital harm, and to situate the moral panic around digital technology firmly within American cultural narratives.

Theodora’s doctoral thesis, “Digital Re-Enchantment”, tells the stories of the people she met in this community, showing how they navigated loneliness, mental health, success, and spirituality while living in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Theodora’s research began in the context of a Fine Art degree at Wimbledon College of Art, where her sculptures and installations explored differing attitudes to online life; whether it makes us feel more or less “connected” to one another.

She is currently writing a book based on her fieldwork and makes ceramic art about digital experiences.

During her DPhil at the OII, Theodora also helped to run the seminar series OxDEG: Oxford Digital Ethnography Group.

Research interests

Digital Anthropology, Digital Detoxing, Mental Health, Millennials, American culture, American politics, New Age Spirituality, Art, Food Metaphors, Neuroscience, Folk Theories

Positions held at the OII

  • DPhil student, October 2015 – May 2021

Publications

Chapters

  • Sutton, T. (2017) "Our Virtues and Devices: Exploring the Digital Detox" In: Are We All Addicts Now? Digital Dependence Bartlett, V. and Bowden-Jones, H. (eds.).

Journal articles

Events

Blog

Press

Integrity Statement

I conduct my research in line with the University's academic integrity code of practice.