unjapanologist: (Default)
[personal profile] unjapanologist
Forgot to mention this because the acceptance notification came while I was in Deadlineville. I finally get to visit the US! The place is pretty famous, so this is all rather exciting.

The main reason for this trip is Console-ing Passions, a feminist media studies conference that will take place in Boston on 19-21 July. l'll be part of Mel Stanfill's panel 'Media fandom and/as labor'. Rebecca Carlson and Karen Hellekson will be on that panel as well. It looks like I'll get to meet a ton of people I've only ever spoken with over the internet, which is awesome.  

My topic will be the flow of money in dojinshi exchange. Abstract:

The market for print dojinshi (Japanese fan comics) is one of the most well-known examples of an established, large-scale system in which fan creators routinely monetize their fanworks. Besides fans, many entities from convention organizers to transport firms and dojinshi resale shops are involved in the creation of a dojinshi and its distribution throughout its commercial 'life'. In this case study, I analyze what all these actors contribute and how they are compensated for their involvement. I keep a particular focus on how and to what degree fans who create dojinshi may or may not profit financially from the sale and resale of their works. It has been pointed out numerous times that in the case of English-language online fandom, any financial value that is created by fannish activities is often reaped exclusively by media companies. By examining how money circulates in one existing and well-developed system for the monetization of fanworks, I raise the question of who might 'deserve' compensation when a fanwork creates financial value in the context of the increasingly intense fan-industry collaborations (intentional or not) around English-language media.

I've been reading through Comiket catalogs and zines to get some numbers, and poking various people involved with dojinshi to ask about their experiences. Mighty interesting. Although everybody sells their works, of course, there still seems to be a similar sort of gendered divide as in many English-speaking fan communities, with the guys being more focused on the financial side of things in several ways. But the people who told me that all emphasized that this is just a general impression they have, so I'll have to dig deeper into this. Drafting Fanlore articles on dojinshi resale shops and dojinshi printing companies as I go along.

But enough research talk. Tourism!

Iroh in his tourist hat

Since it's my first time going to the US, I'll squeeze in some travel time before or after the conference. I definitely want to take a train across the country from Boston; I adore train travel, and the long Amtrak routes look fascinating. I'm thinking of just buying a two-week rail pass and making a big loop, starting with Boston -> Seattle and then going south for a while before returning to the east coast via a different route. If this is a crazy idea and Amtrak trains are actually from hell, please tell me now?

I can get off the train here and there and explore for a few days. Recommendations for such side trips would be very, very welcome. Anyone want to meet up? :)
 
Date: 2012-05-21 04:12 pm (UTC)

starlady: Raven on a MacBook (Default)
From: [personal profile] starlady
Amtrak isn't from hell. Come to Berkeley and visit me! The Amtrak stop is a ten minute bus ride from my house.
Date: 2012-05-22 05:39 pm (UTC)

starlady: Raven on a MacBook (Default)
From: [personal profile] starlady
*double-checks fares*

No, looks like not. The ticket prices are astronomical at this point. Damn it! Maybe next year.
Date: 2012-05-21 04:48 pm (UTC)

angrymermaids: (Default)
From: [personal profile] angrymermaids
Aw yeah, Seattle is incredible! Pike Place Market is a must for any visitor, but do NOT visit the World's First Starbucks there as it is a huge tourist trap. I don't know when you're planning on being there, but I'll be there for about a week to visit friends and go to Geek Girl Con, and if we happened to cross paths that would be awesome.

If you have time to spend hiking (or if you even like hiking), I strongly recommend doing so. The national parks here in the West are some of the most amazing places... anywhere. The Grand Canyon is cool of course, and there's also Yosemite in California and Bryce Canyon in Utah (Salt Lake City is also a very interesting place. It's on the other side of the state, though). Yellowstone is in my neck of the woods if you like pondering over geysers and weird-ass geothermal eruptions. It's actually really cool. And of course, not just Seattle but the rest of Washington has beautiful temperate rainforests and it's close to the water (not great for swimming, though.)

If you're going down through California, San Francisco is a must-visit. Uh, I don't have many recommendations for East Coast stuff, but I did live near Washington, DC when I was little and there are all kinds of monuments and famous historical things to see there. Also the Smithsonian, which I would love to visit someday.

tl;dr: There's something cool to see around every corner.
Date: 2012-05-21 11:21 pm (UTC)

angrymermaids: (Default)
From: [personal profile] angrymermaids
Aww, too bad. And Yellowstone is probably a bit out of the way--I live three hours from the very western edge, which isn't where the geothermal stuff is, plus I'll either be studying for finals or moving to Nebraska at that time. Speaking of which, if for some weird reason you find yourself in Omaha at the end of July, we can explore together (my family is relocating, but I've never been there before). :D

I haven't been to the more famous parks recently so I don't have any hiking recs. :/ There should be visitors' centers with maps though!
Date: 2012-05-21 11:31 pm (UTC)

angrymermaids: (Default)
From: [personal profile] angrymermaids
Don't feel like you have to! I know if I were going to travel across the US, I'd make more interesting stops than Nebraska. :D
Date: 2012-05-21 07:10 pm (UTC)

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
From: [personal profile] attackfish
Come down to Albuquerque New Mexico, and I'll drag you out to Old Town, or up to Santa Fe.
Date: 2012-05-21 11:17 pm (UTC)

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
From: [personal profile] attackfish
Nope, very dry heat. Humidity is about ten percent most of the time. And since we're about 5000 feet up where I live, it's not as hot as most people think. Winters can get pretty nasty, but summer's not that bad.
Date: 2012-05-22 12:18 am (UTC)

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
From: [personal profile] attackfish
Not hot might be stretching it. 80-90 degrees F, hot but not killer.
Date: 2012-05-22 12:20 am (UTC)

angrymermaids: (Default)
From: [personal profile] angrymermaids
Southwest standards of "not that hot" = sandboxes just barely do not turn into pools of molten glass?
Date: 2012-05-22 12:35 am (UTC)

attackfish: Yshre girl wearing a kippah, text "Attackfish" (Default)
From: [personal profile] attackfish
No humidity makes it feel a heck of a lot cooler. 80 degrees in Florida? horrifying. 80 degrees in a desert? perfectly nice.
Date: 2012-05-21 07:19 pm (UTC)

foxinthestars: cute drawing of a fox (Default)
From: [personal profile] foxinthestars
In my experience here in Missouri, Amtrak is slow and not as scenic as one might hope, but a pleasant way to travel. I can't recommend anything great to see in this neck of the woods (my favorite place to go is just a liberal college town with an arthouse movie theater, nothing you couldn't find more and better of on the coasts), but I'd love to meet up if you happen to pass through. The Amtrak line across Missouri goes through Jefferson City, which is where my Unitarian church is, and we've got the state capitol full of Thomas Hart Benton murals.

I do recommend Grant Park in Chicago. I've only been to the Art Institute, but it is awesome (Monet's Water Lillies! Georgia O'Keefe flowers! Sunday on La Grande Jatte! And oh, yeah, American Gothic's there too I guess...), plus it's just a beautiful lakefront park. The stuff there I haven't been through includes the Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum (home to Sue the T-Rex).
Date: 2012-05-21 07:20 pm (UTC)

kouredios: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kouredios
BRB, registering to attend this conference. Boston is totally driveable for me. Thanks for posting! I didn't even know about it.
Date: 2012-05-22 12:25 am (UTC)

owlmoose: (california - freeway)
From: [personal profile] owlmoose
If you are prepared to spend about half of your two weeks in transit, train can be a great way to see the US. Boston to Seattle on Amtrak without any stops is 3 days; going south is another day at least, and then you'd have at least another 3 days to get back. So it depends on whether your priority is seeing bits and pieces of a lot of places, plus countryside from the window of the train, or getting to spend a lot of focused time in one or two places. I've only taken Amtrak up and down the Eastern Seaboard,never cross-country, but it is a pleasant way to travel, especially if you're not jammed onto a commuter train. I wish we had better rail on the West Coast.

Seattle is an awesome place to visit, as are San Francisco and Chicago (any reasonable Boston > Seattle train trip is going to take you through Chicago).
Edited Date: 2012-05-22 12:26 am (UTC)

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