December 20, 2005

Fandom, Gender and Gamers as Shoppers

Filed under:Fandom, Gaming Women — Lake Desire @ 5:32 pm

The latest issue of The Escapist features an article by Bonnie Ruberg, Video Game Merchandise: Fandom, Gender and Gamers as Shoppers. I learned several things from the article, including the existence of the term “manpurse,” and that video game merchandise is popular enough to warrent poser accusations.

Ruberg finds an interesting contradiction:

You might think that, like other supposedly childish elements of videogame culture, gaming merch would be more often associated with women gamers than men. Yet, that isn’t so. Why? Of course, some of it can be explained with the old stereotypes. For example, if collecting is linked to hardcore fandom, then it can’t be a female thing, because women (so the thinking goes) are not hardcore fans. Plus merchandise that sells through sex appeal is much less likely to be aimed at female gamers.

Isn’t fandom (in the slash-writing, character-shring sense) usually dominated by women? Or does video game fandom draw a different crowd than books and television entirely?


December 2, 2005

“She’s Such a Geek” Call for Submissions

Filed under:Fandom, Gaming Women — Lake Desire @ 2:08 pm

Annalee Newitz and Charlie Anders are calling for submissions for She’s Such a Geek: An Anthology by and for Women Obsessed with Computers, Science, Comic Books, Gaming, Spaceships, and Revolution.

This anthology will celebrate women who have flourished in the male-dominated realms of technical and cultural arcana. We’re looking for a wide range of personal essays about the meaning of female nerdhood by women who are in love with genomics, obsessed with blogging, learned about sex from Dungeons and Dragons, and aren’t afraid to match wits with men or computers. The essays in She’s Such a Geek will explain what it means to be passionately engaged with technical or obscure topics—and how to deal with it when people tell you that your interests are weird, especially for a girl. This book aims to bust stereotypes of what it means to be a geek, as well as what it means to be female.

The submissions deadline is January 15, 2006. More info.


November 29, 2005

Fandom and Male Privilege

Filed under:Fandom, Privilege — Lake Desire @ 11:38 am

From LJ user Cereta posted an article on Fandom and Male Privilege:

The second result of the invisibility of male privilege is that a lack of male privilege is taken as active oppression, as male-bashing or bias towards women. It is not enough that the mere presence of something which actively aims at women and women’s interests is taken as oppressing men; simply not catering to men’s interests is perceived as oppression. And I mean, by the way, honestly perceived that way.

It is not enough, you see, not to exclude men. We have to actively get them involved. I’m not sure what’s more insidious, there: the notion that we must find it not only desirable that men get involved in fandom but also some kind of imperative, or the notion that it is our, women’s, responsibility to get them involved in fandom.

Read the full article.