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Understanding Yaoi/Boys' Love Chinese Fandom

Zhao, Yao (2019) Understanding Yaoi/Boys' Love Chinese Fandom. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Understanding Yaoi Boys Love Chinese Fandom Yao Zhao.pdf - Final eThesis - complete (pdf)
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Background: Yaoi, or Boys’ Love (BL), is a female-oriented genre of subculture that portray fantasy romantic and erotic relationship between men which presents in manga, prints, fiction, anime, internet series, drama, video game, or any media format. Yaoi originated in Japan in early the 1970s and has since gone global. Yaoi was introduced into China in the 1990s and has become an essential part of Chinses popular culture. Aim: The overall aim of this research is to provide an understanding of the Chinese Yaoi fandom. Method: Following ethical approval, data was generated via interviews and online surveys. Twenty semi-structured online and face-to-face interviews were conducted with self-identifying, female Chinese Yaoi fans (17-28 years old, M=23.5). Interviews explored personal preferences, experiences, feelings and understanding about Chinese Yaoi and were analysed using Thematic Analysis. Two almost identical online surveys of Chinese Yaoi Fandom (in Chinese, final n=1922) and Anglophone Yaoi Fandom (in English, final n=1713) collected quantitative and qualitative data. The survey has 144 questions in five sections: demographics, Yaoi, feelings about Yaoi, social relationships, and other erotic materials. Qualitative data was content analysed and the quantitative data was analysed using a variety of appropriate statistical tests. Three overarching foci of analysis emerged from exploratory inspection of the data: That is, the research offers an analysis of the heteronormative frame in Chinese Yaoi through integrating female Chinese fan interviews with Sinophone and Anglophone survey data; addresses the question ‘who engages with Yaoi in China?’; and explores engagement with the sexual content of Yaoi in Chinese and Anglophone contexts. Findings and Conclusion: Compared with Chinese and Anglophone Yaoi fans: Chinese fans were more influenced by a heteronormative frame than were the Anglophone; Chinese fans included more female and heterosexual participants with relatively more socially conservative and less socially liberal outlook than Anglophone participants; Chinese fans showed clear differences between casual and avid fans in the consumption of sexual content of Yaoi and other erotic materials, unlike Anglophone fans; however, as a global youth culture, Chinese and Anglophone fans demonstrated highly consistent preference in the sexual contents of Yaoi materials. This research is based on the largest ever survey sample of Yaoi fandom in both China and Anglophone regions and is unique in allowing comparative analysis of the data from these almost identical surveys. It covers a large range of important aspects of Yaoi and has demonstrated self-validation between the qualitative and quantitative findings and well as between the two surveys in terms of sexual content preferences for this idiosyncratic global phenomenon. Where there are cultural differences, this has been explored thoroughly and can be related in general to social conservativism of Chinese culture and the social liberalism of Anglophone regions.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Yaoi, Chinese, Anglophone, Cultural differences, Audience study, Qualitative Resarch Method, Quantitive Research Method
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Medicine and Health (Leeds) > Institute of Psychological Sciences (Leeds)
Depositing User: yao zhao
Date Deposited: 13 May 2020 07:17
Last Modified: 13 May 2020 07:17
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/26415

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