Rebecca Williams and Lauren Sowa discuss Disney theme park fandom from Disneyland California to Disney theme parks across the globe. Williams and Sowa share their history with Disney films and how that love has translated into their love for the theme parks as adults. We then dive further into the theme park as a space of play for adults and why being a childless adult at Disney has been unjustly stigmatized. Even with strict rules and regulations, Disney theme parks offer spaces of play for adults who have very little safe spaces to play outside the parks. We also discuss the Disneyfication of adult source material and how that further translates into the transmedia brand universe that is specific to Disney theme parks. Disney theme parks have been spaces of ritual and transformation for both children and adults. As Disney continues to consume our fantasies with its continual purchases of franchises such as Star Wars and Marvel, how do children and adults alike contend with the rapidly expanding trans media universes that come together within the Disney theme parks while the outside world contends with its own racist, sexist, and culturally insensitive past and present.
A full transcript of this episode will be available soon!
Here are some of the references from this episode, for those who want to dig a little deeper:
About Rebecca Williams; Faculty Page
- A Fan Studies Primer
- Theme Park Fandom: Spatial Transmedia, Materiality and Participatory Cultures
- Post-Object Fandom
- Everybody Hurts
- Torchwood Declassified
How to Properly Dress at Disneyland’s Galaxy’s Edge
What is DisneyBounding?
Disney Bounding Fan documentary
Henry Jenkins, Transmedia Storytelling 101
Splash Mountain revamp
You Must Remember This on Splash Mountain
Brides for Sale on Pirates of the Caribbean ride
Revisions to Jungle Cruise
Lauren Sowa on Disney Princesses as Feminist Icons
Mickey Mouse Monopoly: Disney, Childhood and Corporate Culture – critical documentary on Disney culture
The Official Album of Disneyland/Walt Disney World ride theme music
Walt Disney’s Tour of Disneyland
Disneyland – Lands – Wonderful World of Color – Walt Disney
The Disneyland Story (Disneyland Episode #1): October 27th, 1954
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“In Time” by Dylan Emmett and “Spaceship” by Lesion X.
In Time (Instrumental) by Dylan Emmet https://soundcloud.com/dylanemmet
Spaceship by Lesion X https://soundcloud.com/lesionxbeats
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