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Mirrored from http://henryjenkins.org/2011/09/aca-fandom_and_beyond_rhianon_1.html


Matt Yockey: Rhiannon, I very much enjoyed reading your thoughtful post, especially since you come to this topic from a very different background than I do. You say that earlier in your academic career you identified as a feminist but also say that you don't consider yourself an acafan because you resist labels. Assuming that you still identify as a feminist, this suggests that in academia we remain very much invested in labels that carry a certain cache, diminishing the potential value of other labels.Read more... )

Participants )
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Mirrored from http://henryjenkins.org/2011/08/acafandom_and_beyond_jonathan.html

Jonathan Gray:
Perhaps I could start with this issue of definition that all of us touched upon. I think it's interesting that, albeit in different ways, both Matt (from wholly within the realm of acafandom) and Alisa (feeling outside of it) note that the term may have calcified around a set group of people with a set group of interests. Matt suggests that's a "misreading," and that there are many types of acafans. But I guess my question is whether we need to rescue the term, or whether the ideas can run free of it. Read more... )


Matt Hills:
I find myself agreeing with much in Jonathan and Alisa's opening arguments, although all three of us are approaching acafandom from quite different perspectives. With Jonathan, I too would like to see a greater encouragement of reflexivity in all media studies, not just in something called acafan writing. And with Alisa, I absolutely share the concern that acafandom has led to a restricted set of textual objects becoming unhappily canonised in TV Studies, because those happen to be the shows that many academics enjoy watching and writing about. I think that acafandom does have a responsibility to cover shows that go beyond rather limited taste cultures and demographics, as well as covering a wider range of fan practices and activities (as I suggested in my own opening statement). As I said, I think we should be looking to encourage a wider-ranging, more diverse, and ever more critically reflexive acafandom, in relation to both 'aca' and 'fan' experiences. Read more... )

Alisa Perren:
I find it fascinating that, although Matt, Jonathan and I all have similar issues with the current definition - and perception - of acafandom, we deliver very different responses on how to proceed. To put it somewhat crudely, Matt (fanacafan?) thinks we should salvage the term, Jonathan (anti-fanacafan?) wonders if it has outlived its usefulness. Meanwhile, I am more ambivalent. I do not feel comfortable arguing to either "dump it" or "save it," as I do not have the long-standing investment in researching and writing about it that either of you have. The most I can do is speak from the stance of a "casual observer," illustrating how the term might presently be perceived by those who are less aware of its layered history and meanings. Read more... )


Participants )
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Mirrored from http://henryjenkins.org/2011/08/aca-fandom_and_beyond_alex_juh_1.html

On August 9th, strewn across three time zones, Jay Bushman, Alex Juhasz, and Derek Kompare picked up where their previous segment ended, and pondered the implications of the concept of fandom via Skype chat. Read more... )


Participant Bios )
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Mirrored from: http://henryjenkins.org/2011/08/aca-fandom_and_beyond_roberta_1.html

Roberta Pearson:
You and I differ so radically with regard to what constitutes our acafandom that it’s difficult for me to respond to the substance of your post (not having had experience of the kind of fandom in which you’re involved). I’m going to use what you say to continue to meditate on what we might mean by acafan and whether it’s a useful label. It’s interesting that you, like many others, have the urge to self-confession. You say that the overlap of fandom and academia in your life has everything to do with personal ethics, particularly through the feminist science fiction convention where you serve as an advocate of transformative fan works. You also say that you’re not at the moment a fan of a particular text but rather as I suggested in my original post a fan of fandom. I’m glad that you’re ‘self-confessing’ this way and also glad that other people here have given into the urge, since it may be these self-confessions that help us to refine the acafan label. In terms of the matrix of acafandom that I began to develop above, you’d be a non-tenured, transformational fan of fandom, and now I would add with a strong stake in this indentity. I’d be a tenured, affirmational fan of particular texts without a particularly strong stake in this identity, except for my continuing connections with Sherlockian friends and my decade long attempt to write my book about Star Trek as television. I think the identity issue might be a key differentiator not only amongst fans but amongst acafans as well. Being an empiricist at heart (although not a raw positivist) I’m tempted to put together a little questionaire for everyone participating in this site to see if we can come up with an acafandom matrix.
Read more... )
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Mirrored from: http://henryjenkins.org/2011/08/aca-fandom_and_beyond_karen_to_2.html

Karen Tongson:

What strikes me when I view our opening remarks collectively, is that each of us has such a different orientation to the concept of "cultural studies." I think I work from a Williamsian genealogy (still very much influenced by literary studies), whereas Jayna invokes the Frankfurt School, and Gerry speaks from the vantage point of Anthropology. These positions clearly have an impact on how we each respond to the notion of "fandom" itself: whether we embrace, disavow, or express some ambivalence to being a fan, let alone an "acafan." Read more... )
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Mirrored from http://henryjenkins.org/2011/07/aca-fandom_and_beyond_harringt_1.html

John: I can't help thinking my provocation is an odd fit in this larger discussion. Although I once belonged to a gay Sci-Fi fan group (the Gaylaxians), have attended Sci-Fi conventions, and love speculative literature, films, and television shows, I've never been comfortable with identifying myself simply as a "fan." I have always used the term in relation to a particular cultural text or practice. I also find I don't identify with many people who do declare themselves "fans" in the general sense.

Read more... )
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Mirrored from: http://henryjenkins.org/2011/07/aca-fandom_and_beyond_christin_1.html

Jack: Christine, I really enjoyed your piece - the compact way you account for the colonial context within which popular culture is absorbed, reviled and then transformed by those very people whom colonialism has reduced to the status of mimics. I also appreciate your effort to refuse the sharp distinction between fan and critic, poetry and prose, song and soundscape. In relation to your observations on "fandom" and "fanaticism," I would love to hear you say more about excess, about over the top performances that go beyond the reproduction of the same. I also have struggled with that Sedgwickian notion of "reparative" and I wonder how you are using it. I love her take on the paranoid form of reasoning that dominates academic style but I never really believed in the reparative as an alternative...Read more... )
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Mirrored from http://henryjenkins.org/2011/07/acafandom_and_beyond_week_four_1.html

Drew: I enjoyed reading both your responses to the provocation questions, and it seems like we have agreement for the most part around a lot of the issues involved with acafandom.

Corvus: I think I'd like to explore Nick's definition of fan though to start our conversation. I'm not sure it applies as much today as it once did. I think fandom has evolved considerably and the "fanatic" connotations are being lost.

Nick: How so? I might be pointing to an extreme case in my initial thoughts, but I still see people defending Attack of the Clones.

Read more )
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Mirrored from http://henryjenkins.org/2011/06/acafandom_and_beyond_week_thre_1.html


Kristina: I think it's interesting to look at three of us and how our different background quite strongly affects not just the way we do research but also the things we worry about. Read more... )

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In this second installment, the participants engage in back and forth conversation intended to extend upon the ideas contained in their opening statements.

Louisa Stein: Anne and Sam, I'm struck by the harmony in our three separately written pieces. We all seem to recognize the perceived dangers or negative connotations of the term acafan, and yet feel a value in holding on to the term because of its potential as a self-reflexive signpost, a bridge between interconnected disciplines or subject positions, and even perhaps a politicized position.
One question I have is from where this perception emerges that acafan is an essentialized standpoint or identity connected to identity politics? All of our three responses here indicate that that none of us relate to the term acafan in this way, though we are all wary of these associations. Why and where does this negative perception of acafan as a divisive concept take root and how can we counter this narrative? Or is this perception an unavoidable part of the project of acafan work?

read more )
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