Call for Contributors – Fan Phenomena: Batman

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On the eve of Christopher Nolan’s trilogy-closer The Dark Knight Rises, Intellect is seeking contributors for Fan Phenomena: Batman. This new series, Fan Phenomena, is prompted by a growing appetite for books that tap into the fascination we have with what constitutes an iconic or cultish phenomenon and how a particular person, TV show or film character/film infiltrates their way into the public consciousness. The series will look at particular examples of ‘fan culture’ and approach the subject in an accessible manner aimed at both fans and those interested in the cultural and social aspects of these fascinating – and often unusual – ‘universes’.

Papers are invited that discuss any aspect of Batman and Fandom, including, but not limited to, the following:

FAN MEDIA

From widely distributed fan films such as Batman: Dead End to slash fiction that imagines Batman and Robin as more than just crime-fighting colleagues, fan responses to Batman frequently broaden the scope of the source material. Topics might include: fan art and fiction, fan films, mashups, machinima as well as issues surrounding authorship and copyright.

ADAPTATIONS and INFLUENCE

Although Batman may have his origin in comics, the Dark Knight has cast his shadow over a number of media and entertainments. Batman fans also migrate between media, often bringing their expectations and habits with them. Papers are invited which consider the interaction between Batman, adaptations and fans. Topics might include: Online fandom, Fan criticism of adaptations, viral marketing such as The Dark Knight, Comic-Conventions, Transmedia Storytelling and Convergence Culture.

FASHION

From Bat-Symbol emblazoned T-shirts to full on cosplay, Batman’s ionic status has inspired many fashion choices. Papers are invited which consider this relationship. Topics might include: Merchandise, Escapism, Fashion Trends and Cultural Impact of Style.

REPRESENTATIONS OF FANS

Papers are invited which discuss representations of “fans” in Batman texts such as the “Beware the Gray Ghost” episode of Batman: The Animated Series in which Bruce Wayne meets his childhood icon, or The Dark Knight in which Batman inspires like-minded vigilantes.

ECONOMICS AND POPULARITY

Despite occasional dips in popularity, Batman has been an important force in popular culture for over seventy years. Papers are invited which consider the role fans have played in sustaining the hero’s recognition.

Please submit abstracts of no more than 300 words, an academic bio and contact details (either in the body of a mail or as a single attachment) to Liam Burke atliam.burke@nuigalway.ie by 12 March 2012. Final papers will be 3,000 – 3,500 words and will be need to be submitted no later than 31 May 2012.

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