Mass Market Pornography: Romance Novels for Men are Different
- Via Twitter: 'Jonathan Allan talks about vanilla sex and the "fantasy of the ordinary", and links it to Ina Garten saying that you need "really good vanilla" for baking' and 'I asked what it means to call this “ordinary” when its still so far from real sex acts/bodies. Allan’s response touches on this sex as seeming “achievable” which is intriguing me re. the porn/romance connection.
- Via Twitter:
@JodiMcA and @lmfletcher72 looked closely at the paratext of 43 category romances published by M&B UK in August 2017 - these are "books that kiss the shelves rather than linger on them".
- Via Twitter: Smith defines NA as 'romance about "emerging adults" ages 18-29, focusing on forming identity and transitioning into adulthood' and "
notes that female protagonist of New Adult romance deals with coming if age in a patriarchal culture dealing with the male gaze, madonna/whore complex. Her ideal male partner is both strong /powerful and woke and emotionally intelligent."
- Via Twitter: "about Black Woman-Asian Men (BWAM or AMBW) romances and how the texts reflect the BWAM movement objectives and resist white supremacy" and "Tension in BWAM fiction between resisting and succumbing to tropes, particularly beauty norms and colorism."
Where are all the Fun Books: Holdings of Popular Romance and Science Fiction Novels in Academic Libraries
- Via Twitter: "she has found that uni libraries in the Oberlin Group hold much more sff than romance" and "Sheehan's larger point is that libraries collect the academic criticism on romance, but not the primary texts academics also need to study the genre. What will be studied in 20 years, esp as public libraries turn over their collections?"
Romance Novels & The Female Gaze: The Evolution of the Romance Genre’s Book Covers
Love to Teach You: Pedagogical Reflections on Alisha Rai (Hate to Love You) and Alyssa Cole (An Extraordinary Union)
- Via Twitter: "presenting her PhD work on romance novel covers. The research is based on LOTS of interview data!" "Some interesting findings in
@writerahart's interviews: 65% of romance readers preferred digital books and electronic devices; average age of respondents was 38; purchases are mostly online (Amazon dominant) but bookstores (chain, used, and local) still there (33-38%)"
“A recipe for sugary-sweet erotica:” Consumption in Alexa Riley’s Novellas
- Via Twitter: "Evvie Valiou looks at the clash between body positivity and objectified consumption in Curvy by Alexa Riley. The heroine is presented as a positive fat woman, but is the object of the hero's consumption. Sex is also heavily described in food terms."
“Doubt Creeps In”: Sarah MacLean and the Inverted Orpheus of One Good Earl Deserves a Lover.
(Re)imagined Romance: intersections of cultural memory, media representation and the perpetuation of repressive ideologies
“Love is (Color) Blind: Citizenship and Belonging in 21st Century Historical Romance Fiction”
Her History, Her Romance: Evangeline Parsons Yazzie’s Naabeeho/Diné historical romance series
- Via Twitter: "Hoorenman, discussing Evangeline Parsons Yazzie's Navajo romance novels, notes that Native authors of genre fiction may depart from conventions because those were often developed by white authors and may be problematic or oppressive. Not genre ignorance."
Justice and Divine Vengeance Pursuing Crime: Revenge in Sarah MacLean’s Rule of Scoundrels Series
“Welfare Reform, Romance, and a Black Love Ethic for the 1990’s”
- Via Twitter: "
@wilthepony concludes by identifying progress from liminal role of heroine to liminal role of hero & mythic power shift in @sarahmaclean ‘s novels: men cannot effectively revenge, but goddesses can."
- Via Twitter: "Sridhar’s publishing house had a stated goal of breaking away from the Mills and Boon model to an Indian one with its own Indian romance fantasy but perhaps her own books don’t depart as much from the rich hero trope"
Rainbow nation in love. South African popular romance in Afrikaans and the Politics of Representation
“Cockygate”: Trademark Bullying, Romance Novels and Intellectual Property
- Via Twitter: Martina Vitackova introduced these books [Sophia Kapp's Malansusters trilogy (2007, 2008)] as the reader favorites among popular romance in Afrikaans.
Mr Worldwide: How global is your alpha?
- "This paper presents the results of a case study of the heroes of all ten titles published to date by Ankara Press, “a new imprint bringing African romance fiction into the bedrooms, offices and hearts of women the world over” (“About Us”, AnkaraPress.com)." More details here and, via Twitter, "Burge notes that Ankara positions its heroes as explicitly opposed to a western toxic masculinity but toxicity in African masculinity is referenced too, so alpha is still present."
Love in the Time of the #MeToo movement Teaching Paranormal Romance in 2018
The “Grandly and Inhospitably Strange World” of Heroines on the Autism Spectrum in Romance Fiction
Happy for Whom? The Contingent Happy Ending in Romance Fiction
- Via Twitter: '
@RomanceProf on 19th C. American romance, [...] asks: "who is supposed to be happy at the end of a romance?" (A: the couple, but also the reader) and what happens if that is no longer true?' and "
Looking at Lydia Maria Child’s Hobomok (1824). Readers differ in experience of ending then (1824) and now (2019)" because it's "an early 19c American novel with a Native American hero who nobly stands aside to allow the white heroine to reintegrate into white society. This novel is a good example of how the definition of a "happy ending" shifts over time." and "happy endings [...] are more complex & contingent (who gets to be happy? what about shifting cultural definitions of happy?) than often assumed."
- Via Twitter: 'Wagner looking at Thomas’ Lady Sherlock series and Hoang's The Kissing Quotient. Thinking about ways neurodivergent characters read as “diversity” to some readers and reductive tokenism to others' and 'Wagner tracing ways that Kissing Quotient frames Stella’s discomfort with touch not as a need to adapt to some neurotypical norm, but as a conversation about consent' and 'Wagner unsure if Thomas means for us to read Charlotte Holmes as neurodivergent, but finds key indicators in the series. Tracing ways the series emphasizes world's need to adapt to Charlotte, not Charlotte’s need to adapt/acclimatize.'
Devon Fitzgerald Ralston
- Via Twitter: "
@dfralston on #Cockygate which, alongside #ritassowhite is one of the [burning] topics in the Anglophone romance world right now", " @dfralston's point is that Hopkins ( #Cockygate author) is using trademark in a way that it is not meant to be used" and "In #cockygate Hopkins uses legal rhetoric of cease and desist letters to silence other authors, loops them into the automated reporting structures implemented by platforms to protect corporate IP."
Tania de Sostoa-McCue
- Via Twitter: 'Sostoa-McCue interested in disconnect between romance community, industry, and public which leads to the erasure of marginalized peoples' because 'Representations of romance claiming to “help” romance or reframe it often do this in ways that reify what they claim to be working against. Tracing problem through media coverage of romance (publics) and certain reader responses (counter publics)'. Specifically: 'Sostoa-McCue turning to romance scholarship. Thinking of ways pop-rom studies, in working to value romance lit, maybe falling into similar trap where they ignore romance counterpublics and privilege mainstream romance' and 're. pop-romance scholarship "I know we’re all trying to do our best but I felt really erased by my own research"'
Mallory Diane Jagodzinski
- Via Twitter: "
@FeistyHeroine interested in anxieties about citizenship in age of neoliberalism via Duran’s Duke of Shadows and Romain’s Secrets of a Scandalous Heiress" and "Citizenship under neoliberalism = proving yourself effective/successful within capitalism" and "The state is prominent throughout 2 books, until conclusions where it disappears. One book seems to question if state is possible, other replaces with capitalism. Seem to suggest citizenship is precarious/unobtainable."
Explaining the Appeal of Popular Romance Novels in Aesthetic Terms
- Via Twitter: "Jessica Miller [...] is taking us into aesthetic experience, asking: what makes good romance novels good?" and "Miller outlines common objections to romance and points out how they're over-simplifying and not helpful: it's just porn; it's formulaic; it's badly written; it's conservative."
Idyllic Escapes and Ideal Theory: What Romance Novel Settings Can Tell Us About What’s Wrong With The Real World
Matthew Hoffman and Sara Kolmes
- Via Twitter: "Matthew Hoffman and Sara Kolmes [...] are focusing on the idyllic settings of romance, arguing that these highlight things that make the HEA harder in real life" because "idealized escapist settings in romance (isolated castles, islands, etc) create the conditions for HEA by shutting out systematic problems and creating space, which then can prompt a critique of those systematic problems" and "Unrealistic or escapist romance can prompt readers to ask what is being excluded or escaped from: financial worries? Societal oppression? Something else?"
Engaged, but Not Enfranchised: Political Women in the novels of Rose Lerner
In transports – the negotiation of pleasure and the construction of authority in Jane Eyre fan fiction
Swooning Maidens, Heroic Saviors: How Fictional Romantic Archetypes Engage with Popular Notions of Love
- Via Twitter: "
@LucySheerman is making an argument about the spaces of cars as contested in gender terms in Jane Eyre fan fiction by Betty Neels, Penny Jordan, and others" but "to clarify, @LucySheerman isn’t applying fic to texts that would necessarily consider themselves fic. These are published romance novels that she links to Eyre and reads as fanfic."
- Via Twitter: "
@jayu77 [...] is reading agon (from classical Greek meaning a struggle or conflict) in romance novels" and " @jayu77 is interested in ways romance novels use agón to play out conflict and desire, wants to track the lexicon and changes over time" and suggests "More recent novels reduce hero’s attacks on heroines, but also expand the agon backwards into characters’ history."