Gender Construction in Transmedial Narration: Star Wars Transmedia and Fandom

Gender Construction in Transmedial Narration: Star Wars Transmedia and Fandom

Işıl Tombul (Independent Researcher, Turkey)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 21
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0128-3.ch011

Abstract

Transmedia is a narrative that allows a message to meet with the user in different media. With media convergence, a story has become available in different media, and this has also led to the expansion of the market. Star Wars has an important transmedia and a wide fandom. Because the film is on the concept of power, the construction of power shows itself in this area with masculine symbolism. In the post-Disney period, the female characters are prominent, but the films protect the masculine narrative. The aim of this study is to examine the construction of gender in the transmedial narrative in Star Wars films together with the discussions in fandom. For this purpose, gender construction in the transmedial narrative are analyzed by case study.
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Introduction

Transmedia storytelling is a narrative of the new digital era. With the technological revolution, transmedia story telling has emerged due to the obsolescence of the old media with the new media and the digitalism between the different media. The narratives now show multi-layered, variable, transitive, participatory features in accordance with the characteristics of the digital era. The transmedial narrative is now seen as a voluntary factor when it refers to the direction of the narrative.

The narrative is now moving on a ground where the variable, multiple, interactive, open-ended, consumer-generated. With the inclusion of the consumer, the issues that now appear as social inequality have begun to break. However, no matter how much the technology changes, the innovations that come to the social sphere can be used as an aid to the continuity and construction of the old values in the society, even though it is said that they change the society and provide more democratic and more egalitarian presentations. Because social values do not change as quickly as technology. The inequalities that exist in the field of society sometimes reconstructs themselves in this narrative. For this purpose, in this study, heroism and masculinity carried out in transmedial narrative through Star Wars will be examined.

The Star Wars film series created by George Lucas has a complex chronology. The story takes place in a distant galaxy. The film has broken records of revenue and has won Oscar in many branches. Lucas finished the screenplay for the Star Wars series in 1973, but the Hollywood producers asked him to start with the sixth series in the nine chapters. Then the film went down to six main parts. The fourth episode of this film was released on May 25, 1977 (NTV, 2018).

In 1999, the second trilogy began. Today, the third trilogy began in 2015 with the Force Awakens and continued with Last Jedi in 2017. When we look at Star Wars products, a character evolves from hero to villain. Star Wars is a cult piece that has been admiring the past generations since the first period. The film belongs to a particular fandom culture with an important fan base that has ceased to belong to a particular company. However, the film was criticized in terms of masculinity. In the film, masculinity which is built in intergalaxcies is built between the media today by tansmedia.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Fandom: The name given to the community of fans in general.

Fan: Someone who admires someone or something, and likes that thing or anyone excessively.

Star Wars: Star Wars is the universe and brand of narrative created by George Lucas. There are products in film, comic, computer game, television, toy, etc. areas.

Transmedia: A narrative that allows a concept or a message to meet with the user in a complementary manner through different media.

Gender: The definition of sexuality in the social process.

Narration: A way of telling a series of events in such genres as novels, stories and fables.

Masculinity: A series of roles, behaviors, and attributes generally associated with being a man.

Femininity: A series of roles, behaviors, and attributes generally associated with being a woman.

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