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Swivelling the spotlight: stardom, celebrity and ‘me’
journal contributionposted on 02.01.2015, 00:00 authored by S Holmes, S Ralph, Sean RedmondSean Redmond
Celebrity studies critiques the ways in which celebrity culture constructs discourses of authenticity and disclosure, offering the cultural and economic circulation of the ‘private’ self. Rarely, however, do we turn the spotlight on ourselves as not only scholars of stardom and celebrity, but also part of the audience. Autoethnography has become increasingly important across different disciplines, although its status within media and cultural studies is less visible and secure, not least because the emphasis on personal attachments to media forms may threaten the discipline’s still contested claim to cultural legitimacy. The study of stars and celebrities has often found itself at the ‘lower’ end of this already debased continuum, perhaps making such tensions particularly acute. Based on three personal narratives of engagements with stars and celebrities, this co-authored article explores the potential relationships between autoethnography and celebrity studies, and considers the personal, intellectual, and political implications of bringing the scholar into the celebrity frame.