Desperately seeking methods: new directions in fan studies research

Adrienne Evans, Mafalda Stasi

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    Fan studies has been critical and groundbreaking in a number of respects. However, in regard to methodology, discussion seems decidedly thin on the ground. Such a missing discourse has wider implications, raising questions such as: what kinds of knowledge do fan studies researchers want to produce? What are the objects being studied? How does fan studies inform a general approach to research? And how is the area going to maintain itself, if we don’t start talking about our methodology and world - view? This paper is an attempt to bring the discussion of methodology to the fore in fan studies. In doing so, we show how the history of methodology in media and cultural studies implies certain methods. We then turn to newer methodologies in interpretative qualitative research. From here, we argue that there is room for mutual dialogue between fan studies and methodology: namely in work around the ‘aca-fan’ subject position of the researcher; and in digital research opened up by online modes of fandom and fan activism.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4-23
    Number of pages20
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2014


    • fan studies research
    • methodology
    • aca-fan
    • autoethnography
    • digital ethnography


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