Read this to me
The Rhizomatic Revolution Review  Journal’s (The R3 Journal) Editorial Board are individual experts in their fields of study and research that offer their expertise and knowledge as they help to shape the vision and ideals of The R³ Journal.
Our Editorial Board includes members of the R3 Team that have been participating since R3’s inception as well as several members who joined the board along the way as we worked to establish R3.
The Editorial Board members took some time to share additional information about themselves that we didn’t include in the About Us section of The R3 Journal website, in an effort to share their unique qualities as a part of The R3 Journal Team.
- What is your educational background and current position
- Have you won any awards (academic or otherwise)?
- How did you first become aware of BTS?
- What aspect of BTS initially drew you in?
- Have you ever seen BTS live?
- What is your favorite BTS MV or song?
- What book would you recommend for any member to read? Why?
- Outside of all things BTS, what is your preferred way to spend free time?
- What is your favorite quality in other people?
- What is your favorite thing about yourself?
What is your educational background and current position?
Ana Clara Ribeiro (Brazil)
I earned a Bachelor’s degree in Law at Centro Universitário UNIRG, and after that I earned a lato sensu Postgraduate degree in Civil Law and Civil Procedure Law.
I am a member of the Brazilian Bar Association, and I have a certification in Content Marketing as well.
After practicing law as an associate lawyer at a law firm in my hometown (Gurupi, Tocantins) and as a legal advisor at the Office of my home-State’s Attorney General, I am currently working at a company specialized in Intellectual Property, based in the South of Brazil.
I still work as a content marketing freelancer, though, and I write and compose songs too! I guess I just can’t keep quiet!
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson (USA)
I have a PhD in Composition and Cultural Rhetoric from Syracuse University (go Orange!). I’m currently an Assistant Professor of Rhetoric and Writing Studies. I research and write about culture, citizenship, literacy, and rhetoric.
Dr. Chelsea Murdock (USA)
I have a PhD in Composition and Rhetoric from the University of Kansas. I am currently the Director of the Writing Center at Clemson University. At Clemson, I am also a Lecturer in the Department of English. My research is a web of writing center studies, Indigenous rhetorics, transformative works and cultures, and composition pedagogy.
Katie Hulme (USA)
I received my BS in Physics from Duke University and obtained my MS in Medical Physics from MD Anderson Cancer Center – UT Houston Health Science Center. I currently practice as a board-certified Diagnostic Medical Physicist.
Kelly Van Houten-King (USA)
Bachelor of Arts degrees in French Language and English Literature; Master of Business Administration in Marketing and Management, all from the University of Wisconsin at Madison (go Badgers!). I currently work in educational publishing in the K-12 market. I develop materials related to reading, literature, and language arts.
Lyna Etienne (France)
MSc in Mechanical Engineering, Université Paris-Sud. Currently working as a mechanical simulation engineer.
Mackenzie Rawcliffe (USA)
I have a Masters in International Relations and Public Administration from the University of Maine. I am currently a digital marketing manager and aspirational game designer.
Maria Rutkowska (Poland)
I’m currently a PhD Candidate in the field of Cultural Studies. I also teach a course on New Media for undergraduate students and work in an administrative position. I have a BA in Literary Theory/Polish Philology and an MA in Cultural Studies.
Snigdha Dutta (UK)
I’m currently a PhD candidate in Mental Health Research in the U.K. I’m examining the potential ways in which university students develop psychological, social, and emotional resilience during their time in a higher education context.
Prior to my PhD studies, I was a special needs educator in New Delhi, India. I have an MSc in Mental Health Research wherein I explored the experiences and perceptions of forensic nurses caring for long-stay patients in a high-security psychiatric hospital.
I completed my BA (with honors) in Psychology at the University of Delhi, India
Have you won any awards (academic or otherwise)?
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson
2019: Book Award from the Coalition on Community Writing
2016: Rhetoric Review Best Article
2010: Scholars for the Dream Award, Conference on College Composition and Communication
Katie Hulme: I was once a fast enough runner to qualify for Corral A in the Chicago Marathon (I count my bib as an award).
Snigdha Dutta: I have been awarded two scholarships: Developing Solutions Masters Scholarship, and the Vice Chancellor’s Scholarship for Research Excellence (International).
How did you first become aware of BTS?
Ana Clara Ribeiro: I first heard of BTS when I saw RM in the music video for MFBTY’s Bucku Bucku. I thought he was really cool, then I found out he was in a group.
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson: I learned about BTS from my oldest daughter. She became ARMY on Thanksgiving, 2018. For me, it was initially a way to learn more about what she liked. I fell down the rabbit hole after watching MVs with her, but when we streamed the Wembley concert, the deal was sealed! I was amazed by their performances, but also their ability to connect with people from all over the world, and to make everyone feel like they are part of something very, very special.
Dr. Chelsea Murdock: Dope was the first song I heard. I adored it — the beat, the lyrics. It ended up on my comprehensive exam playlist and, later, my dissertation proposal playlist. I danced around to it when I was stressed. That was my first interaction with BTS before becoming an ARMY.
Katie Hulme: A YouTube artist I follow covered a few of their songs, so I got curious and looked them up — it was a swift descent down the rabbit hole from there.
Kelly Van Houten-King: I hadn’t watched Saturday Night Live for years, but in April of 2019 I just randomly tuned in. I’d never heard of BTS, so I was just agog as they performed, and I spent a while trying to figure out exactly why they were so intriguing. Sure, their bodies were doing impossible moves with impossible speed. Yes, they were strikingly beautiful. Their voices, the style of performing, all of it was mesmerizing. The contrast between the songs they performed, Boy with Luv and Mic Drop was like a slap in the face. Then I decided to just learn their names, and well . . . I now live happily in a rabbit hole.
Lyna Etienne: Paris KCON 2016: I followed a friend to the concert because her sister could no longer attend and saw them perform. I had never heard of them before and Fire woke me up. Stupid me, I did not even bring a camera . . .
Mackenzie Rawcliffe: About a month after my wedding in 2017, I randomly watched my first Kdrama, Strong Woman BongSoon, late one night. I rapidly became more interested in everything Korean: language, history, and culture. As a working adult, I hadn’t had as much opportunity to learn about the world like I had during my studies, so it was exciting and fell into it fast. It just so happened that 9 days later BTS was on the American Music Awards, and with my new interest in Korea I naturally decided to give these boys a chance as well…. and we all know what happened after that. Although, I wish I had been with them earlier – I think it was for the best; otherwise, I would have had to choose between BTS and my husband – because Love Yourself: Her came out on my wedding day!
Maria Rutkowska: I saw a reaction video to DNA, and after that I was gone. I’ve completely fallen down the rabbit hole of BTS content.
Snigdha Dutta: I underwent a highly stressful couple of days in October of 2018. Because I was reeling from the things that had happened, I was finding it very difficult to sleep at night. I spent my nights YouTub-ing away and one day I came across the Mic Drop MV. It was so sophisticated and well-produced that it had me captivated from the first second. Since I couldn’t believe this could be performed live, a quick search led me to the MAMA 2017 performance and BTS immediately cast a spell on me. I spent the next few nights watching every MV, translation videos, live performances, and dance practice videos. Figured out the starter pack to BTS (!) and got onto VLive, Twitter, and followed the end of the year award season. By the end of the year, I had watched every Gayo and RunBTS episode. BTS appeared in my life at a time when I was feeling lonely, helpless, and burnt out. My days and nights got happier and there has been no turning back.
What aspect of BTS initially drew you in?
Ana Clara Ribeiro: I can say Namgi (Namjoon + Yoongi) are the ones to blame!
Back in 2015, before I even became a fan of the group, RM caught my attention right away with his rap. Although I had been a casual listener for years, my interest for BTS really began when I saw in the news that Suga was promoted to full member of the Korean Music Copyright Association, in early 2018. I’m a nerd for all things songwriting and intellectual property, so that really caught my attention.
Coincidentally, I was teaching myself the basics of music production at that time. When I knew Suga was also a producer, I searched for videos that would explain his creative process. Then, I naturally transitioned from wanting to know more about him to wanting to know more about the entire group.
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson: For me, it was the fact that they seemed to connect with their audiences on so many different levels. We are being invited to participate in the music, the fandom, and in our own grassroots social justice issues. I’ve heard about ARMY organizing anti-bullying campaigns, beach cleanups, and so much more. As someone who studies the ways in which stories matter, I appreciate the rich storytelling experience that is built into the music and MVs.
Dr. Chelsea Murdock: It was the lyrics and the storytelling that really captured my attention. When I watched Blood Sweat & Tears for the first time, I saw a comment telling the audience to go watch the short films. I fell down the rabbit hole. I started watching lyric videos and finding translations. BTS’s lyrics are what kept me around. I had never found myself reflected in a song before. Not like that, at least. The fact that those words that I connected with were in a language not my own just added depth to the fact that people can connect across borders and boundaries and definitions.
Katie Hulme: I was initially sucked in by their dance practice videos. I was blown away by their talent, synchronization, and overall ability to work as a unit. Had that been it, I might have moved on after a few months, but the deeper I dug, the more impressed I became — with the character and personalities of each of the members, the depth of their lyrics, the carefully crafted album concepts, the overarching narrative told through a multi-media approach, the pervasive literary and cultural references, the passion, diversity, and extensive network of ARMY . . . It’s hard to keep this paragraph short because it was the process of continually learning new things that kept me falling. The harder I looked, the more I found, and so far I haven’t hit the bottom of the hole.
Kelly Van Houten-King: The multilevel storytelling in the Bangtan Universe. I read a couple of articles about the impact of this approach, then saw a couple of analysis videos, then dug a few more yards into my rabbit hole. The threading together of the time-travel/redemption story and its exploration of good versus evil, all wrapped in a complex puzzle of literary and mythological allusions is genius. I would give a kidney to be able to work on this kind of fictional world building. The way the styling, the characterization, the hints and clues, the recursiveness all fit together is just breathtaking.
Lyna Etienne: The Wings era short films and Blood Sweat & Tears. Incorporating art in various forms (paintings, classical music, book quotes, mythology) within an MV was new to me. I could not understand anything . . . I did not have any clue about the Bangtan Universe, but I liked how all of these various artistic styles converged into specific storytelling and visuals — and I fell into the rabbit hole.
Mackenzie Rawcliffe: I think, I should honestly say the visuals – The AMA performance with the choreography, style and stunning good looks shocked me a little…like, are they allowed to be this pretty and shake me up like this?
Maria Rutkowska: Initially it was the music; I really enjoyed it. Since the first song I heard was DNA, I remember thinking, “Is that what pure happiness sounds like?” The more music I’ve discovered, the more hooked I have become.
Snigdha Dutta: Interestingly, I am researching a concept called resilience, and my own psychological and emotional resilience was tested and weakened. BTS’s story is the embodiment of resilience and they have inspired and empowered me immensely.
Apart from that, the wholesome and loving relationships BTS members have with each other and the para-social relationship with ARMY has been fascinating to observe and be a part of. I’m in awe of how they’ve inadvertently and seamlessly affected the lives of this vibrant and diverse fandom. I also love all of their side projects, including the G.C.Fs by Jungkook, Vante, the free songs on SoundCloud (Ddaeng” and Tonight are my all-time favorites), and of course their partnership with UNICEF for the #EndViolence campaign.
Have you ever seen BTS live?
Ana Clara Ribeiro: I’m very happy to say that I have seen BTS live twice! My first time was the legendary concert at Citi Field, New York, in 2018; and the second time was day 1 of the Love Yourself: Speak Yourself Tour in São Paulo, Brasil, 2019.
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson: No, but I am so very hopeful that this will soon change!
Dr. Chelsea Murdock: I have! I saw the Wings Tour stop in Newark in 2017. I saw Love Yourself in Fort Worth and Love Yourself: Speak Yourself in New York. BTS puts on a live performance like no other!
Katie Hulme: Yes! I saw them in Chicago at Soldier Field on Saturday, May 11, during their Love Yourself: Speak Yourself tour. It was incredible.
Lyna Etienne: Paris KCON 2016; LY Tour Paris on October 19, 2018; LY/SY Tour Paris SDF on June 7 and 8, 2019.
Mackenzie Rawcliffe: I’ve seen BTS live 10 times, four stops for each tour, twice at the BBMAs and once in Seoul for The Final. It feels like bragging, but I’m quite happy that I allowed myself this joy and didn’t talk myself out of it in order to be more sensible and adult. It really was worth it every time so I don’t have any regrets – best money I’ve ever spent.
Maria Rutkowska: I attended both days at Wembley for the Love Yourself: Speak Yourself tour. It was an experience I will be forever grateful for, and I will always carry it close to my heart. I don’t think I’ve ever felt such happiness as I did then.
Snigdha Dutta: Yes! I was extremely fortunate to have seen them live at Wembley, London, in 2019. I was still a new ARMY and was a silent spectator on Twitter, so I hadn’t connected with fellow ARMYs. I battled a bit of social anxiety and went on my own! What. A. Night.
What is your favorite BTS MV or song?
Ana Clara Ribeiro: My favorite BTS song is Whalien 52. I think it’s so quintessentially BTS! It has attitude, but it’s also sweet, and it has a great message that pretty much sums up their story and purpose as musicians.
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson: My favorite MV is Blood Sweat & Tears. My favorite song really depends on the day and my mood. The one song I almost always return to is Outro: Tear. Everything about it is perfect. The beats, the melodies, the powerful lyrics, and above all the way RM, Suga, and J-Hope perform the song live.
Dr. Chelsea Murdock: My favorite songs are Two! Three! (Hoping for More Good Days) and Never Mind. I have lyrics from these songs up in my faculty office with the hope that my students can take them to heart.
Katie Hulme: This is a tough one, but I’d probably have to pick Magic Shop. I encountered this song during a particularly difficult period for me personally. It’s the first time I’ve ever found myself having an internal dialogue with someone else’s lyrics. This song helped me put words to my thoughts and inspired me to write my first poem in over a decade.
Kelly Van Houten-King: Blood Sweat & Tears for several reasons: its aesthetic, its homage to so many mythologies, its connection to the story in the Bangtan Universe. (Nobody asked, but #2 would be Run.)
Lyna Etienne: All BTS songs are precious to me. They are positive, helpful, and healing in specific moments of life. If I had to choose a specific MV, then it would be Blood Sweat & Tears. The most aesthetically pleasing MV ever to this day!
Maria Rutkowska: It’s impossible to choose just one! I love their whole discography and I listen to a particular song/album according to the mood I’m in at the moment. There are a few songs that I listen to more often, the ones that mean more to me. For example songs I keep close to my heart are: Tomorrow, I’m Fine, So What, So Far Away, Moonchild, P.O.P. (Piece of Peace) Pt.1, Cypher Pt. 3, Sea, Begin, First Love, and Make It Right.” But it’s really impossible for me to choose. The music they create is just too good for me to have one favorite.
Mackenzie Rawcliffe: I don’t know how to pick a favorite – but a song and MV that I return to a lot for comfort is Lights.
Snigdha Dutta: I have a favorite for every mood! But if I had to choose the ones that deeply impacted me, it would be Sea and Outro: Tear. The imagery these two songs invoke in me has helped me through many distressing times.
Visually, Fake Love is my favorite. The choreography, the symbolism, the fluid verses have all worked together to create a masterpiece. After understanding the Bangtan Universe, I appreciate the MV even more. My favorite lyric from the song is “I grew a flower that can’t bloom in a dream that can’t come true.”
What book would you recommend for any member to read? Why?
Ana Clara Ribeiro: I guess I would choose The Passion According to G. H., by Clarice Lispector. This book is the real definition of an epiphany!
Also, I get the feeling Namjoon would love Lispector. Both of them are deep thinkers who have a very philosophical approach to life and a very particular way to use words to express their questions and lead us to new ones.
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson: Jeff Chang’s Can’t Stop Won’t Stop: A History of the Hip-Hop Generation. Chang offers a rich history of the roots of hip-hop. He provides readers with the historical context necessary to understand this genre of music and its influence on music across the world. I think BTS members have referenced the influence of other music and musicians on their own work. For those who are interested in how hip hop has become a transnational genre, this book is a great start.
Dr. Chelsea Murdock: Indigenous Pop: Native American Music from Jazz to Hip Hop edited by Jeff Berglund, Jan Johnson, and Kimberli Lee. Often, people are not aware of the influence Native musicians have had on the history of music. This book is a really interesting and eye-opening read that makes the contributions of Native artists vivid, showing how music carries on traditions and mediates movements toward justice.
Katie Hulme: Madeleine L’Engle is one of my all-time favorite authors. I love her poems “Instruments (1)” and “Instruments (2)” (part of her collection The Ordering of Love). Her novels are fantastic as well (cue A Ring of Endless Light). They might be written for “kids” but in her words, “if I have something to say that is too difficult for adults to swallow, then I will write it in a book for children.” She was a lover of philosophy, science, and fantasy, called poetry “the language of angels,” embraced paradox, and believed in the distinction between fact and truth. In short, I believe Namjoon would enjoy her work.
Kelly Van Houten-King: As with Ursula LeGuin’s short story “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas,” sometimes deep messages come in simple forms, so I guess I would recommend Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White. It is an animal rights message wrapped in a children’s story, but the allegory is not so different from that in LeGuin’s story. Both are about seeing the victims of your choices, which is ultimately about compassion.
Lyna Etienne: To ARMY, I would recommend the poems of Arthur Rimbaud. Few people know they are quoted in the HYYH Pt.1 photobook. Even fewer people know which poems these quotes come from and how deeply they are connected to HYYH.
To BTS, I would recommend Charles Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal: dark themes, anti-heroes, criticism of society, etc. His works have heavily inspired Rimbaud, Verlaine, and Mallarmé.
Mackenzie Rawcliffe: I think any of the members would enjoy the book Station Eleven, particularly now, because it is a short poetic book about the importance of art in an apocalypse and Space Opera because it is a fun and thoughtful book about using music to determine if a species is sentient and worth saving. I’d also recommend the comic book series The Wicked & The Divine because of the way it addresses celebrity and the beautiful artwork.
Snigdha Dutta: Maybe it’s because Namjoon and Yoongi have been wearing Fear of God a lot, I would recommend to them The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins.
This might seem silly, but to BTS, I would recommend all the Calvin and Hobbes comics by Bill Watterson. Calvin, to me, symbolizes deep self-awareness and inner strength, while being portrayed as eccentric and different. He was and will be the child in me, making it in a world that often seems to not ever be satisfied with me. Also, Hobbes is a lot like their BT21 characters. The characters are a manifestation of their conscious and unconscious selves, and a source of comfort, as often seen with RJ and Jin.
Outside of all things BTS, what is your preferred way to spend free time?
Ana Clara Ribeiro: I love listening to music, reading about my favorite topics on the Internet, and getting to know new places to eat and have coffee!
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson: I love being with my two daughters, visiting museums, and anything that involves listening to BTS and being at the river.
Dr. Chelsea Murdock: I write a lot. I really enjoy drinking coffee, settling in somewhere, and crafting out stories. I’ve been writing fanfiction for over a decade now. When I’m not writing, I’m reading.
Katie Hulme: I love sleeping. But if I can stay awake (and my kids stay in bed) I enjoy writing poetry, reading, playing piano, running, and watching both quality and mediocre television.
Kelly Van Houten-King: Reading, writing, drawing, painting, dog walking, and volunteering. I volunteer at a couple of sanctuaries for “agricultural” animals rescued from neglect and/or slaughter. Even though this work consists of physical labor in excessive heat, it’s the most fulfilling and therapeutic way to spend time. Unlike every other aspect of my life, this work actually helps someone; it improves someone’s life. Highly recommend.
Lyna Etienne: Basically Namjooning: reading, going to art galleries and museums, watching plays/movies, walking to discover new places.
Maria Rutkowska: I like to tinker with things, fixing them and seeing how they work, learning new skills, wasting time on YouTube, and watching TV series.
Mackenzie Rawcliffe: Right now I really like learning Korean and reading.
Snigdha Dutta: I enjoy learning languages, cooking and baking, reading books, and watching thriller/suspense television shows and movies.
What is your favorite quality in other people?
Ana Clara Ribeiro: I really appreciate politeness, kindness, and the ability to be open-minded.
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson: I admire people who can be kind even in the direst of circumstances. My mother had that quality, and I’m trying my best to emulate her example.
Dr. Chelsea Murdock: Kindness.
Katie Hulme: In the words of C.S. Lewis, the combination of “a child’s heart, but a grownup’s head.”
Kelly Van Houten-King: Compassion in its deepest and most real sense. That’s it. Someone who is brilliant, funny, skeptical, well-educated, friendly, etc., but who does not have compassion for others (including non-human others) just doesn’t do it for me. It’s an extremely rare quality.
Lyna Etienne: Sincerity.
Maria Rutkowska: Kindness. I believe kindness makes people more open and less judgmental and propels them more into listening and trying to understand others, making them ultimately more empathetic and wise.
Mackenzie Rawcliffe: Passion, curiosity and efficiency.
Snigdha Dutta: More recently, I have noticed that people are becoming self-aware and prioritizing themselves in unselfish ways. By that I mean, people are being honest with themselves and voicing the highs and the lows. That has helped people connect with each other more authentically. I admire this and I’m striving to adopt this form of self-care.
What is your favorite thing about yourself?
Ana Clara Ribeiro: I love that I embrace all the things I love, as random as they may seem, and that I sometimes manage to find ways to connect them.
Dr. Candace Epps-Robertson: I am curious and eager to learn. If I could find a way to go to school forever, I totally would! As soon as I finished my PhD, I started to investigate law school.
Dr. Chelsea Murdock: I had to sit with this one for a bit. My enthusiasm is probably my favorite thing about myself. I am pretty even-keel most of the time, but I believe whole-heartedly that the energy you bring to a thing (whatever that thing is) affects the way it is done and received and perceived.
Katie Hulme: I love that I unintentionally exude excitement. I inevitably start talking really loudly and get extremely animated the more excited I get. I usually have to be told to keep it down.
Kelly Van Houten-King: I have a moral and ethical framework that I believe in deeply, and I live my life the best I can according to that ethos. Sounds fun at parties, right?
Lyna Etienne: Lol: My smile?
Maria Rutkowska: I don’t really think much about stuff like this, but if I were to praise myself, I would say I appreciate my ability to learn quickly and effectively, especially when it comes to new skills. It’s a gift I’m grateful for.
Mackenzie Rawcliffe: Creativity, curiosity and making systems work.
Snigdha Dutta: I think this relates to my favorite quality in other people! I didn’t think I had the strength and capacity to cope with this challenging year, but my self-compassion and perseverance helped me make some positive and important decisions. Because of this, my favorite thing about myself is that I’m ever-growing and developing my sense of self to be a better me for myself and my loved ones.