tishaturk: (Default)
Issue no. 15 of Transformative Works and Cultures came out today; it's a special issue on fandom and/as labor, and I am really looking forward to reading all the essays. (This is not, for the record, something I say about all the academic journals to which I subscribe.)

And now for the shameless self-promotion: one of the essays is mine! I wrote "Fan work: Labor, worth, and participation in fandom's gift economy" for the Symposium section, which means that it's relatively short and less ponderously academic than some of my other essays. It grew out of thinking about Rache's essay "The Fannish Potlatch" and Karen Hellekson's "A Fannish Field of Value: Online Fan Gift Culture" and agreeing with a lot of what's in both those essays but also thinking about what I wanted to add to the conversation about fandom's gift economy and how it works--and in particular thinking about what what I wrote at the end of this post from last year: "the behind-the-scenes work that goes into reccing, reblogging, running awards sites, administering prompt memes, tagging for meme archives, etc., is why I get so frustrated with definitions of "fan work" that focus primarily on writing fic and making vids and ignore or handwave all the other kinds of work that make my daily fannish experience what it is."

An excerpt from the TWC essay:
While art objects may be the gifts most publicly recognized or validated by fellow fans, and while these gifts are indeed a crucial part of fandom's gift economy, we can better appreciate the scope of fandom's gift economy if we recognize that fannish gifts include not only art objects but the wide range of creative labors that surround and in some cases underlie these art objects. We can better understand the relationship between gift exchange and community formation if we see fandom as a system not just of reciprocal giving but of circular giving. And we can better evaluate the relationship between fandom and production if we attend to not just the giving but the receiving of gifts.


This is the first thing I've published in fan studies that isn't specifically about vidding (although it is very much informed by my own experiences with vids and vidding, especially note 4, in which I am totally poking fun at my own history as a vidder). It was fun! I might do more of it. On the other hand, it turns out that I have a whole lot of things to say about vids, so that will probably keep me busy for the foreseeable future. :D
tishaturk: (pen)
Issue no. 9 of Transformative Works and Cultures came out yesterday; it's focused on Fan/Remix Video, and it looks amazing—I am really, really looking forward to reading the whole thing. It includes an essay I wrote with Joshua Johnson, a former student of mine, called "Toward an ecology of vidding." I'm really proud of this essay, and I'm hoping it will form part of the basis for a longer project, so I'm already thinking about how to revise and expand it. If you read it and have thoughts about it, I'd love to hear them; you can post comments at TWC, comment here, send me an email, whatever. All feedback is welcome: points you liked, points you disagreed with, points that need expansion or clarification, things we missed, anything!

As I was re-reading the essay for the final proofreading, I thought of something that was really important to me (I can't speak for Josh here) while we were working on it, but which was a little too meta to easily integrate into the essay itself, so I thought I'd write about it here instead.

One of the things I wanted to do in this essay was to write about a typical vid rather than an unusual vid.

More about this under the cut )

I suspect that sometimes we downplay 'ship vids because we're worried that other academics won't take those vids seriously, or maybe even because we ourselves are nervous about discussing explicitly romantic vids in an academic context, but as a feminist I worry about this tendency. Saying or implying that 'ship vids aren't serious or aren't worthy of study, or are worthy only if they have some other historical or analytical significance, seems to me to be a profoundly problematic thing to do, so I'm hoping to counter this tendency more explicitly in my upcoming work.

...long post is long, but my point is that I had a blast writing about [personal profile] lamardeuse's vid, and I really appreciate her permission to do it, and I want to write more about the kinds of vids that I first fell in love with.
tishaturk: (OTW)
I've spent most of the last couple of months wrapping up some older research projects that predate my work on vids (although one of them, I think, has ended up being much stronger as a result of my work on vids!). But there are two important things going on this week that I had to make time to post about.

First: OTW membership and donation drive! I am ridiculously excited about some of the new donation premiums, especially the tote bag, but mostly I am excited about the chance to contribute to the amazing work that the OTW is doing -- or, rather, that the OTW is enabling fans to do for ourselves by providing an organizational structure that helps us pool our energy and expertise, teach each other new skills, provide stable homes for the fanworks we produce and share, and much more. And, of course, donating means membership, and membership means the chance to vote in the upcoming board elections.

A second matching donation challenge has just been posted, so it's the perfect time to donate!

Second: Open Access Week! My own commitment to open access began with fandom and has grown through my work on the staff of Transformative Works and Cultures, the OTW's online open-access academic journal. Karen Hellekson, one of TWC's co-editors, has written eloquently about the importance of open access and online publication; like her, I'm proud to be part of a journal and a movement that are changing the way academics share ideas.

In that spirit, I'm making available .pdfs of my first article on vids, published last spring:

"Your Own Imagination": Vidding And Vidwatching As Collaborative Interpretation. Film & Film Culture 5 (2010): 88-110. [AKA the one about "Vogue" and "Ring Them Bells."] This is the article as it appears in print; unfortunately, some of the formatting came out a bit wonky and I confess I find the two-column format difficult to read because of the odd spacing, but it is what it is.

I've got another article in an anthology that should be coming out soon, which I'll share as soon as I've got the final version in hand!

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Tisha Turk

November 2016

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