Book Spotlight – ‘Fan Phenomena: Star Wars’

May 13, 2013 at 7:24 am | Posted in Books, Star Wars, Star Wars Books | Leave a comment

While looking over the Star Wars titles on edelweiss, I noticed a book called Fan Phenomena: Star Wars. It looked interesting: a bright orange cover with a Vader silhouette, a publisher I’d never heard of, and the selling point “first ever book addressing the Star Wars saga holistically”. Looking further into the publisher, I noticed that they have a whole series of Fan Phenomena books: Batman, Star Trek, Doctor Who, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Twin Peaks. All of them are set to be released in July 2013.

The Star Wars version will be roughly the size of a standard Star Wars hardcover novel, but will be in paperback format and 132 pages in length. The book will take a look at fan culture and its various aspects. According to Intellect Ltd

“The series aims to ‘decode’ cult subjects in terms of the appeal and far reaching connections each of them have in becoming part of popular culture. We are fully aware that these are not meant to be comprehensive, weighty tomes on the subject – rather a series of ‘handy’ books that each include a fascinating collection of essays which explore a particular area or aspect of the subject’s ‘universe’ in each chapter.”

Here is the full product blurb:

In October 2012, the Walt Disney Company paid more than $4 billion to acquire Lucasfilms, the film and production company responsible for Howard the Duck.  But Disney, despite its history and success with duck characters, wasn’t after Howard; in buying Lucasfilms, it also bought the rights to theStar Wars franchise. Soon after the purchase, Disney announced a new Star Wars film was in the works and would be released in 2015, nearly four decades after the first film hit big screens around the world and changed popular culture forever.

The continued relevance of Star Wars owes much to the passion of its fans. For millions of people around the world, the films are more than diversions – they are a way of life. Through costumed role-playing, incessant quoting, Yoda-like grammatical inversions and scholarly debates about the Force, fans keep the films alive in a variety of ways, and in so doing add to the saga’s cultural relevance. The first book to address the films holistically and from a variety of cultural perspectives, Fan Phenomena: Star Warsexplores numerous aspects of Star Wars fandom, from its characters to its philosophy. As one contributor notes, ‘The saga that George Lucas created affects our lives almost daily, whether we ourselves are fans of the saga or not’. Anyone who is struggling to forget Jar Jar Binks can certainly agree to that.

Academically informed but written for a general audience, this book will appeal to every fan and critic of the films. That is, all of us.

They also included a list of example chapter headings for the Phenomena series in general.

  • Fashion (Cosplay, high street fashion trends)
  • Language (eg. Slang, parlance, dialect; words and phrases particular to each ‘phenomenon’)
  • Character/characterization
  • Fan Media (fan fiction, art, fan films)
  • The virtual (videogames, fan-films, role-play, blogs, fan forums)
  • Philosophies (cod-religions that have evolved from the source phenomena)
  • Economics (merchandise, branding, memorabilia)

Is this a book worth checking out? Well, we’ll just have to wait and see. It certainly has some potential. If you’d like to find out more, you can check out Intellect Ltd.’s product page. While they do list a July 2013 publication date, edelweiss and Amazon are showing an August 15 release.

Posted By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.

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