#web-weaving: Parallel posts, commonplace books, and networked technologies of the self on Tumblr


  • Axel-Nathaniel Rose University of New South Wales




Bookishness, Dark academia, Transtextuality


The literary meme format of "parallel posts" or "web weaving" on microblogging website Tumblr emerged from intersecting fandom and bookish communities in the late 2010s, rising with the fandom-cum-subculture Dark Academia. Parallel posts are an acute symptom of a digital literary culture defined by excess of content, filtered through Tumblr's aesthetic norms as a hub of transformative fandom. Parallel posts both represent and reject the norms of bookishness on other platforms, granting insight into the conflicting impulses of media engagement in the digital age, caught between consumption and rumination. Parallel posts are a resurgence of the commonplace book or quote-collection journal; both forms are technologies of the self, practices of self-transformation and self-expression. At a moment in which the relationship between literature and digital media is in flux, parallel posts and Dark Academia demonstrate the spread of literature into a wholly transtextual, transmedial frame, grounded in both personal expression and in fandom.