The project Cyber Echoes: Textual Analyses of Fan Fiction analyzes fan fiction on the Internet from literary and linguistic perspectives.
Previous research has mainly focused on the technological aspect of fan fiction, and has been descriptive in nature. Some sociological and ethnographic studies touching on the subject have been carried out, but there has been very little work concerning literary and linguistic issues. Although fan fiction is a genre available to many, scholars have been reluctant to view it as literature, leading to a lack of academic studies of this aspect of fan fiction. Applying a gender perspective, and using theories of remediation, intertextuality, dialogism and reception theory, the project, which is an interdisciplinary study spanning two linguistic areas and several cultural fields, investigates a number of texts through close reading. The texts are analysed as regards gender, descriptions of and changes to power relations, as well as how characters and their language change when moving from the original text to fan fiction. In February 2010, the research group Cyber Echoes organized the first academic symposium on fan fiction: Textual Echoes, in Umeå University's HUMlab. Key note speakers were Kristina Busse, editor of the journal Transformative Works and Cultures, and Elizabeth Woledge, fan fiction and literature scholar. Thirty scholars from a dozen different countries presented their on-going works on fan fictions as texts.