Thinking Digital Archives Through Fan Cultures: The Fan Fiction Archive

Why do I want to talk about fan fiction in an academic context, specifically related to digital humanities? What has a fan fiction archive, filled with non-profit texts produced by fans for fans, to do with academically sanctioned projects? Some scholars might even argue that fan fiction is a sub-cultural phenomenon that lacks originality and exists on the fringes of legality. So what is there to be gained in an analysis of fan fiction archives? I argue that fan fiction functions as a way to re-write and re-think canon storylines, characters, and stereotypes. It is one of the most tangible and legible ways to analyze how fans respond to cultural objects, how they create communities, and social networks in which they can disseminate their views and uses of these objects. Continue reading “Thinking Digital Archives Through Fan Cultures: The Fan Fiction Archive”