Over twenty-five years ago, Henry Jenkins (1992) wrote that fan fiction writing is evidence of “exceptional reading” (p. 284) in that the fan text reflects a reader’s commentary. This investigation examined the ways in which crossover fan fiction, fan-written fiction that mixes elements of two or more well-known fictional worlds, might reveal evidence of this “exceptional reading.” Using a qualitative content analysis of 5 crossover texts that remix Rowling’s Harry Potter series and Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, the study focused on fan writers-as-readers of the source texts. Drawing on Rosenblatt’s (1988) transactional theory of reading, which posits that meaning resides in the transactions between reader, text, and writer, and that the meaning produced is a “new event,” this research concluded that the fan fiction writers’ crossover texts were, in part, a written record of some of the fan writers’ transactions with the source texts, a partial record of the “new event.” Furthermore, this analysis provided evidence that these fan readers-turned-writers demonstrated a powerful understanding of their intended and anticipated audience, a commanding and controlled use of emulation, and a calculated mingling of worlds—both to sustain and to disrupt the fan canon—in order to present their own interpretations of, comments on, and admiration for the source texts. The crossovers are evidence of “exceptional reading” in that they demonstrate the fan writers’ reading transactions.
|Commitee:||Dresner, Lisa, Garcia, Andrea, McGinnis, Theresa, Tirotta-Esposito, Rose|
|School Location:||United States -- New York|
|Source:||DAI-A 78/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Creative writing, Reading instruction, Web Studies|
|Keywords:||Crossovers, Fan fiction, Literacy, Potter, Harry, Pride and prejudice, Reading transactions, Writing transactions|
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