Boys’ Love, Cosplay, and Androgynous Idols

Queer Fan Cultures in Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan

(耽美、Cosplay 與中性偶像:中港台酷兒粉絲文化)

Edited by Maud Lavin, Ling Yang, and Jing Jamie Zhao

ISBN : 978-988-8390-80-9

Cultural Studies, Gender Studies Queer Asia (酷兒亞洲)

June 2017

292 pages, 6″ x 9″, 13 b&w illus. & 1 table

  • HK$495.00

Chinese-speaking popular cultures have never been so queer in this digital, globalist age. The title of this pioneering volume, Boys’ Love, Cosplay, and Androgynous Idols: Queer Fan Cultures in Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan already gives an idea of the colorful, multifaceted realms the fans inhabit today. Contributors to this collection situate the proliferation of (often online) queer representations, productions, fantasies, and desires as a reaction against the norms in discourses surrounding nation-states, linguistics, geopolitics, genders, and sexualities. Moving beyond the easy polarities between general resistance and capitulation, Queer Fan Cultures explores the fans’ diverse strategies in negotiating with cultural strictures and media censorship. It further outlines the performance of subjectivity, identity, and agency that cyberspace offers to female fans. Presenting a wide array of concrete case studies of queer fandoms in Chinese-speaking contexts, the essays in this volume challenge long-established Western-centric and Japanese-focused fan scholarship by highlighting the significance and specificities of Sinophone queer fan cultures and practices in a globalized world. The geographic organization of the chapters illuminates cultural differences and the other competing forces shaping geocultural intersections among fandoms based in Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.

Maud Lavin is a visual and critical studies and art history professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and author of Push Comes to Shove: New Images of Aggressive Women (MIT Press). Ling Yang is an assistant professor of Chinese at Xiamen University and author of Entertaining the Transitional Era: Super Girl Fandom and the Consumption of Popular Culture (China Social Sciences Press). Jing Jamie Zhao is a PhD student in film and TV studies at the University of Warwick. She has completed a PhD in gender studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

“This important collection complicates our understanding of fan practices, showing how national and regional factors play an important role in how media texts and identities are understood. It also shows how the Chinese-speaking world is home to dense and often conflicting modes of audience reception of cultural texts deriving from Sinophone, Japanese, and Western contexts.” —Mark McLelland, University of Wollongong

“An exciting anthology by a talented group of emergent scholars whose vibrant studies offer fresh insights on the diverse practices and transregional flows of queer fandom in the Chinese-speaking world. Local in its specificity and transnational in its scope, this book highlights the creativity of queer fan practices while critically locating them within the political and social structures that produce them.” —Helen Hok-Sze Leung, Simon Fraser University