Marc Bolan Rock Shrine: Pilgrimage, Identity and Ownership in a Fan Community

Otter Bickerdike, Jennifer (2017) Marc Bolan Rock Shrine: Pilgrimage, Identity and Ownership in a Fan Community. Journal of Fan Studies, 5.1. ISSN 20466692 (Submitted)

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Abstract / Summary

Marc Bolan, lead singer of T-Rex and purveyor of the glam rock movement, died in 1977. The passenger of a mini cooper which crashed into a sycamore tree, Bolan was killed instantly from injuries sustained in the accident.

When reports began circulating in 1998 that the tree was in danger of being felled, fan Fee Mercury Moon formed the T-Rex Action Group (TAG) in an effort to save the tree and the site. The space has been preserved and embellished through TAG’s efforts and self-funded initiatives.

While the shrine attracts pilgrims from around the world, a core Bolan contingent continues, over thirty years since his death, to in-fight over who controls the right to the memory of Bolan and the place of his death. The shrine is also threatened by both the unsavory actions of a handful of fans in recent times at the space as well as its actual location- one of the most expensive postcodes in England. As ideas of heritage and history clash with property prices and real estate value, TAG faces a battle which they need more than ever to be united to face instead of splintered over personal peccadilloes. This paper will examine how a physical space, such as the shrine, allows for both the perpetuation of memory as well as the expunging of the icon from the importance of the place, as personal meaning and value become intrinsically tied into fan authenticity.

Item Type: Article
ISSN: 20466692
Subjects: Music
Music > Popular Music
Public Exhibition
Religion
Social Sciences
Depositing User: Jennifer Otter Bickerdike
Date Deposited: 14 Jan 2016 17:11
Last Modified: 14 Jan 2016 17:11
URI: http://repository.falmouth.ac.uk/id/eprint/1693

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