Becker School of Design and Technology

Document Type



Cosplay refers to the fan practice of costuming and (often) playacting characters from media. Cosplays can be derived from a spectrum of fan-oriented media franchises including comics, live-action television, cartoons, and more. Matthew Hale (2014, 6) argues that cosplay is less represented in fan studies because cosplay’s embodied and performative nature did not seem to lend itself to the postmodern, intertextual readings that characterized early fan studies. However, as outlined by Paul Mountfort, Anne Peirson-Smith, and Adam Geczy (2018, 24), “Cosplay’s particular form of détournement is a ‘recontextualization’ of sources which aligns it with other mixing and mashing practices, such as fanfiction". Still, a strictly textual analysis of cosplay can neglect cosplay's performative and embodied realization. Responding to this, previous research has read cosplay through the lenses of queer theory. While each of these analyses recognizes the embodiment inherent to the practice, they do not effectively address our current condition of technosociality as key to cosplay's political potency.

Publication Title

Sartorial Fandom: Fashion, Beauty Culture, Identity

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technosociality, cosplay, fandom, fan studies



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