Two new entries this week, both of an academic nature.
Convergent Wrestling: Participatory Culture, Transmedia Storytelling, and Intertextuality in the Squared Circle (The Cultural Politics of Media and Popular Culture) by CarrieLynn Reinhard and Christopher John Olson (Editors):
This book examines how the current era of “convergence” has affected the world of professional wrestling, which combines several different genres, including drama, action, comedy, horror, science fiction, and even romance. Professional wrestling’s business practices exist at the intersection of bottom-up fan-centric strategies and strict top-down corporate control. Meanwhile, the wrestlers themselves combine aspects of carnival hucksters, actors/actresses, comedians, superheroes, martial artists, or stuntmen, and the narratives consist of everything from social critique to geopolitical allegories, and from soap opera melodramas to stereotyped exploitation. Bringing together the latest scholarship in the field, Convergent Wrestling analyzes various texts, business practices, and fan activities to explore the commonalities that define professional wrestling and consider how it exists in today’s new media ecology. In addition, the book considers the professional wrestling industry from several different angles, from massive multinational conglomerate World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) to local indie federations. As such, it will appeal to scholars with interests in popular culture, media and cultural studies, and fan practices.
The millions of fans who watch World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) programs each year are well aware of their role in building the narrative of the sport. #WWE: Professional Wrestling in the Digital Age explores the intersections between media, technology, and fandom in WWEs contemporary programming and business practices. In the Reality Era of WWE (2011 to the present), wrestling narratives have increasingly drawn on real-life personalities and events that stretch beyond the story-world created and maintained by WWE. At the same time, the internet and fandom have a greater influence on the company than ever before. By examining various sites of struggle and negotiation between WWE executives and in-ring performers, between the product and its fans, and between the company and the rest of the wrestling industry, the contributors to this volume highlight the role of various media platforms in shaping and disseminating WWE narratives. Treating the company and its product not merely as sports entertainment, but also as a brand, an employer, a company, a content producer, and an object of fandom, #WWE conceptualizes the evolution of professional wrestlings most successful company.
Titles in bold are new additions. Titles in italics have changed release date in the past week.
25 December: WWE Vol. 4: Women’s Evolution by Dennis Hopeless
7 January 2019: Gene Kiniski: Canadian Wrestling Legend by Steven Verrier
5 March: WWE Greatest Rivalries
7 March: Convergent Wrestling: Participatory Culture, Transmedia Storytelling, and Intertextuality in the Squared Circle (The Cultural Politics of Media and Popular Culture) by CarrieLynn Reinhard and Christopher John Olson (Editors)
19 March: WWE: Then. Now. Forever. Vol. 3
1 December: #wwe: Professional Wrestling in the Digital Age (Year’s Work) by Dru Jeffriesby