Reading and Writing in Negotiations: Studies in the Chinese Harry Potter Danmei Tongren Fandom

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2023

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Abstract

Using the Chinese "Harry Potter" danmei tongren fandom as an example, this thesis discusses the specific reading and writing habits of the Chinese danmei tongren fans. "Danmei tongren" is a Chinese umbrella term for fan fiction about male homoerotic romance that uses characters from popular texts. It is a type of popular culture appreciated mainly by young Chinese female netizens. The thesis is divided into two chapters. The first chapter discusses the reasons why danmei has become the mainstream genre/modality of tongren writing in contemporary PRC, by exploring the lineage of Chinese tongren culture and the desire and needs of its major female participants. The second chapter analyzes the specific fannish reading and writing habits fostered by online communities from the perspectives of the relationship between fans and the source texts, the interactions and conflicts between tongren readers and writers, and fans' literary innovation under communal limitations. Based on participant observation of fan practices, textual analysis of fan texts, and qualitative interviews with eight Harry Potter danmei tongren fans, I argue that danmei tongren fans' reading and writing are shaped and mediated by the complex negotiations in the intimate online community built and connected by fans' emotional investments.

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Sun, Yufei (2023). Reading and Writing in Negotiations: Studies in the Chinese Harry Potter Danmei Tongren Fandom. Master's thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/27860.

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