Monday, June 7, 2010

What is 'fandom'?

Science fiction fans at a convention (Knoxnews)

The term ‘fandom’ describes a group of people who are connected through their love and appreciation for something, such as a movie, sport or book (RalSt, 2010). They create a subculture based on their shared beliefs and feel a sense of connection to fellow fans. However the ‘fandom’ relates only to those who are devoted to their movie/sport/book etc, as opposed to casual followers and people who get enjoyment only for a fleeting moment. This blog will focus on science fiction and fantasy fans as they have shown to be an extremely active audience who engage with their texts. They can also be considered the stereotypical fan whose devotion is the butt of jokes in mainstream society. For this very reason, fans feel a sense of safety within their community, hence reinforcing their fandom status (Jenkins, 1992). The rise of the internet has made it more accessible for fans to connect to share their passion. Websites run by fans for fans make it easy to share thoughts, discussions and creations. Even though fans may build strong online relationships, it is not uncommon for them to never actually meet each other in real life.

Examples of unofficial fan sites
Harry Potter
Harry Potter fan art

A collection of Science Fiction fan texts and communities

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