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Fan Cultures (Sussex Studies in Culture and Communication) Paperback – March 24, 2002

ISBN-13: 978-0415240253 ISBN-10: 0415240255

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Fan Cultures (Sussex Studies in Culture and Communication) + Understanding Fandom: An Introduction to the Study of Media Fan Culture + Fandom: Identities and Communities in a Mediated World
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Product Details

  • Series: Sussex Studies in Culture and Communication
  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge (March 24, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415240255
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415240253
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,582,121 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Matt Hills is a Lecturer in Media and Cultural Studies at Cardiff University.

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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 6, 2004
Format: Paperback
This really is one of the best academic books on fandom, if not the best. Hills has a remarkable ability to read in, through, and around established theory, and yet also has a nice knack of forcing theory to account for grounded realities. Each chapter boldly approaches fandom from the standpoint of an existing binary in fan studies, and as a result, the book shatters through multiple impasses (and sillinesses) in established work to date.
Fan studies is such a maligned sub-discipline in a field (that of cultural and media studies) that all too often prefers mea-culpa lashing of the media body, and that prefers disgust with or pity of the fan to any actual attempt to understand him/her. But the strength of a book like this defies critics of the sub-discipline. Indeed, I don't think it's too much to say that fan studies really comes into its own with this book. Hills has opened up ground for future work, through careful reading of past work and a sense of what is tragically missing.
As such, I would highly recommend this. If you are looking for empirical work, this is not your book (although Hills reads others' empirical work well), but if you want a macro picture of how all that work fits together, this is it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Leo Rubinkowski on January 26, 2013
Format: Paperback
A thoughtful and probing analysis of previous work in fan studies coupled with Hills' own theorization of certain aspects of fan practice. The first four chapters consider certain shortcomings of previous theoretical work on fandom, filling in holes and nuancing concepts core to the field but too likely to be taken as first proposed. Hills brings a great deal of knowledge and insight to his evaluation and expansion of past work.

One shortcoming of the book is its failure to work with cinema fandom to any significant degree. This is particularly problematic if one wishes to use Hills' definition of the 'cult fan' to work with the fan practices and cultures organized around movies.

Nevertheless, this is an essential piece of work for anyone interested, and it provides a solid foundation for work that might expand into unexplored territory, like that mentioned above.

It is not light reading by any stretch, though. Turn to Jenkins' TEXTUAL POACHERS and/or Fiske's UNDERSTANDING POPULAR CULTURE for an introduction, and be ready to reread Hills' book at least once anyway.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The author explores fandom as a culture from the lens of religion, cult enthusiasm, and psychology. He offers an alternative perspective to the works of other pop culture studies academics. I found his insights about pop culture fandom and religion to be particularly fascinating. This book will give you a lot to consider about how fandom engages pop culture and makes it part of their lives, as well as what can be learned by exploring fandom from disciplines outside the norms of cultural studies. What I also found insightful was hit detailed exploration of the hierarchy of fan culture, which was useful for understanding how fan communities work. If you are interested in pop culture studies or pop culture in general, this is a good book to read.
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By jszk on June 1, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
First of all, I'm no expert. I'm just a student trying to learn more about fan cultures.

The only reason I gave it 3 stars instead of 5 is that it's an excellent book about fan culture STUDIES, more than the fan culture in itself. There's a very good discussion about other academic works so if that's what you're looking for, this is the perfect book.

Since I'm still not completely familiarized with all the other studies mentioned, this wasn't completely helpful to me. Maybe in the future, after I've read more.
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