"Cultural acupuncture": Fan activism and the Harry Potter Alliance

Henry Jenkins

Abstract


Fan activists have struggled to defend series from cancellation, defend themselves from cease and desist orders, promote alternative representations, and raise money for charity. Building on this background, this article examines how the Harry Potter Alliance encourages young people to speak out as fans on a broad range of human rights and social justice issues through what the group's leader, Andrew Slack, calls "cultural acupuncture." The group's practice of mapping the fictional content world onto real-world concerns helps empower young people to become civicly engaged and politically active.

Keywords


Civic engagement; Star Trek; Youth

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Transformative Works and Cultures (TWC), ISSN 1941-2258, is an online-only Gold Open Access publication of the nonprofit Organization for Transformative Works. TWC is a member of DOAJ. Contact the Editor with questions.