Mary McGill: To All the Girls Who’ve Loved Before – A Reflection on Female Fandom

The Coven

From across the seminar room he smiled, pleased I was watching as he made his point.

“The problem with Alanis Morrisette, aside from her ‘music’, is that she wails,” he sighed, as if the very thought of her weighed heavy on him. “She literally sounds like a banshee. A banshee with her leg caught in a trap.”

Grinning he turned to his friend, who nodded agreeably, earnestly, the two of them dressed in matching, floor-length black leather jackets, the kind beloved of wannabe film directors the world over.

The class was ‘Popular Culture’, the kind of module that gives Media Studies degrees a bad name – as if popular culture, the very soup we swim in, is somehow unworthy of deep consideration. The discussion, as so often was the case, centred on ideas of the popular; specifically whether something could still have artistic merit and be loved by the masses…

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