Welcome to Research is Magic! This is a research blog started by Kurt Baer and Jason R. Nguyen at Indiana University. We’re interested in creating a venue where fans of the show My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic — or more affectionately, bronies — can share with one another and with scholars the value of the community that you have built around this show. More specifically, we’re interested in:
What it means to be a brony;
The creative works that MLP:FiM fans make for one another; and
How bronies come together to make friendship/magic.
Unlike a lot of research, where “field research” is done within a community but “THE Research” (the paper you publish) is back in the university, we think they’re kinda the same thing, and probably the first is even more important. In other words, if you contribute to this blog, you’re doing research! (ooOOOoooh!!111oneoneoneeleventy-one!) More specifically, we’re asking you to respond to us and to one another as we raise questions about what it means to be a brony.
So, thank you for stopping by, and we hope to see you in the comments!
I’m a dual-PhD student at Indiana University in the Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology and the Department of Communication and Culture. My main research involves people who identify themselves as Vietnamese and the ways they create communities and form Vietnamese identities, especially through music and mediated forms. Other academic interests include internet coding practices and new media.
I’m a PhD student in the Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology at Indiana University. My primary research focuses upon music in Northeastern Thailand; I look at the different ways that people use music to create and express different types of identities (“Thai,” “Northeastern Thai,” “Country”). Other interests include tourism (both studying it and doing it), music of all sorts (I am primarily a saxophonist, but I’ll listen/attempt to play anything), food and drink (both both creating and consuming them), parenthetical statements, philosophy, and quality hats.