Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, and Liam Payne have always insisted: Directioners are not crazy—and they’re not to be ignored. In interview after interview over the past three years, usually surrounded by thousands of screaming young women, the band has politely corrected reporters who characterize their followers as “insane” or “deranged.” “We prefer ‘passionate,’” they’ll demur. “Or ‘dedicated.’”
There’s more to this than semantics. Possibly you don’t realize how radical it is to see five guys treat young women with respect, and to demand that others do so as well, but it is. In a world where “fangirl” and “groupie” are routinely used to put down women who are enthusiastic about anything, One Direction stands in shocking contrast to their peers and to the culture as a whole.
Women need to make their own spaces as fans in a culture where most media ignores, sexualizes, trivializes, or attacks them—particularly women of color. Women control the budgets of fandom, buying 80% of sports clothing, and nearly 2/3rds of all books; women account for the majority of spending online; women are more likely to share and create online. The majority of fan fiction is written by women, putting ourselves and our stories into the worlds that we love. We change worlds, or try to, so that we can be heard. We scream and cry sometimes when we love things, like loving five guys who listen to us. But we’re not crazy—we’re just excited."
Reblogging because these great quotes today:
"I think at that age you are passionate about everything. [If] you remember your first girlfriend at school when you’re 13, you convince yourself that you love her. I think looking in, not everyone can understand it but to that girl or that boy it might be the most important thing in the world. Just because you don’t understand it, doesn’t mean you can say it’s crazy."
"They are so dedicated…our fans put us where we are. I don’t think it’s something that should be taken as a negative, I think passion’s good in any form."
i always think it’s weird, upsetting and symptomatic of the larger problem, too, but mostly just weird, that some dude inevitably feels compelled to butt in with the, “but we call sports fans crazy, too!” point when anyone raises a defense of young women and their right to love things as vocally and passionately as they wish, as if the gentle fraternal ribbing media outlets sometimes give to boisterous sports fans is not entirely different from an entire public world loudly dismissing and deriding excited girl children as stupid, sex-crazed monsters, who are at best embarrassing and at worst dangerous to the very fabric of civilization. but yeah we do all laugh a little bit at screaming grown men with words painted on their chests, so, same, sure.