Online Fan Fiction and Critical Media Literacy

Winter 2009-2010

Source: Journal of Computing in Teacher Education, Volume 26, No. 2, Winter 2009-2010.

This article investigates English-language-learning (ELL) youths' engagement with popular media through composing and publicly posting stories in an online fan fiction writing space. Fan fiction is a genre that lends itself to critical engagement with media texts as fans repurpose popular media to design their own narratives.

Analyses describe how three ELL youth employ creative agency as they fashion fan fiction stories that are relevant to their own lives.

Findings reveal that contemporary participatory media, such as fan fiction writing, involve sophisticated forms of literacy that can serve as useful resources for promoting in-class learning. However, the study also suggests that students would benefit from expert guidance in the areas of critical consumption and production of media and digital texts.

Updated: Feb. 21, 2010