The first issue of The Rhizomatic Revolution Review  is only hours away. The tension and anticipation as we finalize the journal is palpable. The R3 Team is working around the clock, triple checking details, communicating with creators, and chasing down the more elusive deadlines with other departments. Even with all of this happening, we were able to borrow several minutes from multiple members of the R3 Team and get their responses to some of the questions we’ve received since The R3 Journal was first announced. The respondents are from various teams that collaborated to create our very first issue of The R3 Journal, which officially goes live a few hours from now on October 1, 2020.
This will be a multipart series of short blog posts in order to share as many different R3 voices as possible without becoming too overwhelming. Or so we hope. We did our best to answer the questions sincerely and in our own words, ARMY to ARMY.
Please, keep in mind that the responses reflect the personal opinions and interpretations of individuals and may not always perfectly align with R3’s official opinions and statements.
Are you ready? Let’s go!
THE R3 TEAM (respondents)
Crystal Rae – Peer Reviewer
Eva Fernandez – C.C. Committee, Design Team & A.A. Editorial Team
Joselyn – Peer Reviewer
Katie Hulme – Editorial Board
Kelly King – Editorial Board & Copy Editing Manager
Lukne – Peer Reviewer & Marketing Team
Lyna Etienne – Editorial Board
Marri J. Wright – Peer Reviewer & Marketing Team
Monika Kostanyova – Managing Editor & Marketing Team
Nicole Santero – Managing Editor, Peer Reviewer & Marketing Team
Rachel Freeman – Graphic Designer
Shelley Hoani – Peer Reviewer & S.S. Editorial Team
Vanessa Gedu – A.A. Managing Editor
Yumi Ramos – Peer Reviewer & Design Team
An ARMY Rhizome
With the recent growth of multiple ARMY creative and academic publications, it can be confusing what makes each one different from the next. On top of that, some publications share similar characteristics, themes, names, and even staff in some instances. However, there are usually differences in the tone, focus, and purpose of each of these publications.
Although ARMY is a massively expansive fandom, crossover and overlap within subsets is quite common. At times, these intersections can make the fandom feel smaller and as connected as any other community. This is one of the fascinatingly rhizomatic ways ARMYs thrive across online and offline platforms. We hope our candid responses help you to better understand our perspectives and ultimately the vision of what we hope The R3 Journal can be for ARMY.
What is the purpose of The Rhizomatic Revolution Review  aka The R3 Journal?
Crystal Rae: The R3 Journal‘s purpose is to showcase the research, talent, love, and dreams of ARMY along with the relationship between BTS and ARMY, and so much more.
Kelly: I see it as two-fold. On one hand, it gives writers of serious scholarship related to BTS and ARMY a place that will honor and share their work and support their efforts. On the other, it helps the rest of the world see and understand this scholarship. It helps people understand that ARMY is not only teens and tweens (who are a valuable, but not monolithic, part of the fandom), but includes a huge spectrum of people with wildly varying interests: artists, creative writers, data analysts, etc., along with the people who are here primarily for the music.
Katie: To host a welcoming space where ARMY and BTS can be studied and explored; where fans are welcome participants in part of the conversation; and where the goal is to create connections between all forms of knowledge-making: academic, creative, and personal.
Monika: The R3 Journal is here to archive and support academic coverage on BTS and ARMY. Its purpose is also to encourage ARMYs to tell their story and the story of BTS through their eyes.
Marrí: To be a resource and hub for sharing well-researched and reviewed essays alongside creative stories and art inspired by BTS and ARMY.
Lukne: To provide quality academic insights, personal stories, and art by ARMYs to ARMYs.
Yumi: R3 is here to invite ARMYs to incorporate intellectual conversations and critical thinking with their interest in BTS, music, pop culture, and other interconnected studies that they may have interests in. It serves as a good starting ground for improving scholastic growth and higher order thinking skills, whether you are from one field of industry or another, as long as you have a vested interest in examining BTS in different educational disciplines.
Rachel: R3is an invitation from ARMY around the world to consider the wide-ranging spheres of academia and art in relation to BTS.
Vanessa: A place to show ARMYs in different colors. A place where ARMYs from different backgrounds (social, educational, etc.) can gather and show their love for BTS differently from how [they do] on social media.
Nicole: The purpose of the R3is to showcase the impact of BTS and ARMY through the lens of various disciplines and perspectives. It is an opportunity to spotlight aspects of BTS and the fandom in areas that people may not initially think to examine.
Why is it called
The Rhizomatic Revolution Review  ?
Kelly: Because Big Hit wouldn’t let us use “BTS” in our title! Also, the title pays homage to the work of Dr. Lee Jiyoung, whose book BTS, Art Revolution: BTS Meets Deleuze was one of the primary works that brought the members of the Editorial Board together. In it, she discusses the rhizomatic nature of ARMY, and how this type of unorganized organization is revolutionary.
Katie: The “behind” story for our journal name is actually a bit long, as this was not our original name! We came to this name after much brainstorming and back and forth between the EB and AB members. We knew we wanted a name that captured the concept of the “rhizome” in it (as our genesis was a perfect example of the rhizome in action, and we were very much inspired by Dr. Lee Jiyoung’s discussion of rhizomatic systems as they pertained to the BTS phenomenon in her book), and some of our members are quite partial to alliteration (maybe too much?). The numbers were added to provide an identifier specific to BTS that did not directly use their name, as we were a bit worried that innocent bystanders might think we were a journal focused on Deleuzian philosophy… LOL.
Vanessa: Because just like Rhizomes, we are all connected to form a whole. For me, nothing describes the ARMY x BTS dynamic as perfectly as this. Different, yet the same; apart, yet connected. There’s something really endearing about this that you can’t help but smile and agree to.
Monika: “Revolution” can be taken from the book as well, plus, I think BTS and ARMY have proved many times how revolutionary they are. “Review” stems from the peer-review process that the journal is using.
What is a rhizome and why is it important?
Lyna: Beyond the botanical definition or the philosophical one, a rhizome is an endless network of people and ideas spread around the world. It is how you can instantaneously connect with people who can have different ideas, discuss with them and build a common project. It allows for endless possibilities. Just pick out one node and move to the next, and the next, and the next… in any direction you like. Forget the top-down approach. The rhizome is the way to go.
Lukne: Rhizome is a philosophy of connection that is extremely important in times of self-isolation and social distancing.
What is an academic journal?
Lukne: A peer-reviewed, regularly published collection of works.
Crystal Rae: A peer reviewer is someone, like myself, who is assigned an article, story, etc., and reads it over and over, checking facts, and comparing it with [what] the R3 is about. We give feedback and encouragement and are always there to support in any way possible. It’s important for this role because just as there are all types of articles, art pieces and more, there are all types of experiences. ARMY as a whole is extremely talented and the experience that Peer Reviewers bring from all walks of life is the starting point to great submissions and an even greater journal.
Why is Peer Review important for R3?
Kelly: Peer review is one way to establish the legitimacy of the material that is published in R3. The best reviewer for an article about the global economic effects of BTS is someone who understands and has studied economics. Peer review matches experts on a specific topic addressed by the writer with the article. The peer reviewer makes sure the facts and information are sound and up to date, that the ideas are logical and reasonable, and that they are organized in a coherent and well-connected way. An article, like the example article, will be read by economists who have no idea who BTS is, so it needs to live up to the standard economists expect from that kind of scholarly writing.
Lukne: Peer review is a process through which other specialists in the field look over one’s work and provide useful comments and notes for the improvement of the said work.
How is The R3 Journal different from other academic journals and ARMY publications?
Nicole: The R3 Journal is a specialty journal specifically focused on the impact of BTS and ARMY, making it the first of its kind. We know that the best people to provide insight on BTS and ARMY are BTS and ARMY themselves, so it provides an opportunity for fans to have a voice in this type of space. The content R3 focuses on is also not limited to purely research / academic-based works. It includes Creative Collections and Supplemental Stories areas, acknowledging the benefits of sharing stories, art, videos, and other pieces that may not be found in traditional academic journals.
Joselyn: The R3 Journal provides a space for personal monologue and creative works alongside academic essays and articles. The fact that this is an academic journal also sets it apart from other ARMY publications … [as] a place to submit academic work on topics related to BTS and ARMY that will undergo a peer review process to ensure the quality and relevance of the work.
Eva: I believe R3 is more academically sound and led in a mature adult fashion.
Shelley: For me, R3is about connections — making them, finding them, and celebrating them!
You’ve reached the end of the first section! If you’re ready for more right now, please continue, or feel free to check out the next part later. If you find yourself with more questions about the journal and submissions, please send them to us via Twitter or Instagram @TheR3Journal with the #AskR3 tag and we’ll do our best to share our answers as soon as we can.
We hope you enjoy the first issue of The Rhizomatic Revolution Review  on October 1st, 2020!