contexts of reception

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Another article that caught my eye, though I haven’t yet had a chance to read it:

ABSTRACT: “An adequate understanding of the readers of comic books and graphic novels must extend beyond reader–text relationships to comprise contexts of reception. Chief among these is the direct-market comic-bookstore. In contrast to newsstand distribution, the direct market represents the institution of comic-book collecting and connoisseurship as subcultural practices. Comic shops are not simply distribution points in a commodity chain but also social settings integral to the reproduction of comic-book fandom, yet they occupy an ambivalent position between the comic-book industry and its consumers. Citing findings from qualitative research conducted in three Canadian comic-bookstores and drawing on the work of Anthony Giddens, Pierre Bourdieu, and Erving Goffman, this article develops three approaches to the sociology of the comic–bookstore, theorizing them as locales for interaction among participants; as nodes, interlocks and regions articulating the communities served by a given store; and as both sanctuaries from mainstream hierarchies of taste and status, and arenas of competition for social and cultural capital.” (p.125)

Ref: Benjamin Woo (2011): The Android’s Dungeon: comic-bookstores, cultural spaces, and the social practices of audiences, Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics, 2:2, 125-136

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