(… ) racial and ethnic identity must be considered as important to our conceptualizations about fandom spaces as we have always considered gender and sexuality. To do otherwise will be to repeat the mistakes of fields such as feminist and queer studies that have at times unwittingly reinscribed the idea that race is somehow an additional aspect of cultural experience, something that can be disregarded at will (…). Fan studies continues to have a strong thread of reading fan culture (especially female-dominated aspects of it) as enabling spaces that allow for greater freedom in (re)crafting the cultural narratives that seek to order our world. While these spaces definitely work to disrupt hegemonic constructions of what kinds of stories are allowable in fan communities, their recurrent biases and erasures are equally present.

Pande, Rukmini and Swati Moitra. 2017. “Racial dynamics of online femslash fandoms.” In “Queer Female Fandom,” edited by Julie Levin Russo and Eve Ng, special issue, Transformative Works and Cultures, no. 24.

One of several strong recent works on fandom and race, this article looks at Once Upon a Time femslash to analyze and question the “subversiveness” of fannish and academic practices that neglect to consider race. Make sure to check out co-author Rukmini Pande’s Decolonising Fan Studies reading list for more on this topic.

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