"WITH GREAT POWER THERE MUST ALSO COME -- GREAT RESPONSIBILITY!"

Stan Lee, "Spider-Man!" Amazing Fantasy No. 15 (Sept. 1962)

Monday, July 2, 2018

CFP Essays on the Punisher (expired)

A final expired call for the night. This is also on a much-needed topic. I wish them luck in finalizing the project.

Essays on the Punisher
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2017/11/06/essays-on-the-punisher

deadline for submissions:
January 31, 2018

full name / name of organization:
Texas Tech University

contact email:
rob.weiner@ttu.edu



The Punisher: Judge, Jury, and Executioner

Edited by Matthew McEinry, Alicia Goodman, Ryan Cassidy, and Robert G. Weiner


With Netflix’s The Punisher being released in November 2017, it is apparent that a character like the Punisher has a certain kind of widespread appeal. The Punisher was played with great acclaim in Netflix’s Daredevil Season 2 by Jon Bernthal. There were, however, three previous Punisher movies of varying quality dating back to 1989. None of the previous Punisher films did blockbuster business, although 2004’s The Punisher and The Punisher War Zone (2008) were successful on home video.

Created by Gerry Conway, John Romita, and Ross Andru (with help from Stan Lee) in 1974, The Punisher appeared at a time when the idea of vengeance was permeating our popular culture with films like Death Wish and the Dirty Harry series. The character first appeared in Amazing Spider-Man #129, but quickly grew to be a favorite among fans and eventually earned his own series, which continues to the present day. The Punisher is judge, jury, and executioner and is considered by many of the heroes in the Marvel Universe to be morally questionable if not outright villainous.

The editors of this volume seek original essays on the character of the Punisher in his various iterations in popular culture, including the Netflix series, films, video games, animated series, and, of course, the comics. We seek tight essays of around 3,000-4,500 that explain why the Punisher continues to be a popular character.


Possible topics include:
  • The Punisher in Vietnam
  • Why the three previous Punisher Films failed to garner blockbuster status, but did well on video?
  • What is the morality of the Punisher? Is the Punisher justified in his crusade against criminals?
  • Punisher fan films like Dirty Laundry and what do they tell us about the character?
  • Netflix’s version of the Punisher
  • The Punisher in kid-friendly shows like Super Hero Squad.
  • The modern Punisher in the comics
  • How has the character evolved over the years?
  • How did the different writers (Garth Ennis, Chuck Dixon, Steven Grant, Greg Rucka, Archie Goodwin, and Mike Baron) envision the character?
  • The Punisher in Marvel’s Civil War.
  • The Punisher’s relationship to the rest of the Marvel Universe and specific characters e.g., Daredevil, Spider-Man, Captain America, Wolverine, and Nick Fury.
  • Is the Punisher a villain or a hero?
  • The Punisher in the Ultimate Universe
  • The Punisher in video games
  • What is the Punisher’s relationship to police, the military, S.H.E.I.L.D., etc.?
  • Analysis of the Black Widow/Punisher animated film.
  • 1980s Punisher stories that avoided the Comics Code
  • What does the continued popularity of the character say about humanity?
  • The Punisher and feminism (female characters in the series)

These are only a few of the topics related to the Punisher. Please send a 200-300 word abstract to alicia.goodman@ttu.edu and matthew.mceniry@ttu.edu by January 31, 2018.


Please note: We plan to shop this volume around for peer review after it is completed. Acceptance of abstract does not necessarily [sic]

CFP Unmasking Masculinity: Superheroes and Defeating the Power of Patriarchy (expired)

With apologies once again. Here is a further expired call.

Unmasking Masculinity: Superheroes and Defeating the Power of Patriarchy
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2018/04/11/unmasking-masculinity-superheroes-and-defeating-the-power-of-patriarchy

deadline for submissions:
May 7, 2018

full name / name of organization:
Sean Parson

contact email:
Sean.parson@nau.edu



We are seeking 300-500 word abstracts by May 7th, 2018 for possible inclusion into an edited collection seeking to explore the complex relationship between masculinity, toxic masculinity, gender, queerness, and superhero narratives. Over the last few years there have been books that that explore issues of feminism, gender, and sexuality within comic books but rarely have they engaged with the way the genre shapes and is shaped by contemporary conceptions of masculinity. This project is meant to fill that absence focusing on the construction of the masculinity in comics, as well as engage with critical works that deconstruct toxic version of masculinity or offer queerer, trans, and feminist counter-narratives of the concept.


While superheroes have historically been understood as a “male” genre, focusing primarily on militarism, violence, and traditional gender roles and tropes to move narratives forward, in recent years, there have been a slate of critical and feminist superhero series that have shaped the conversation around gender within the genre. While the inclusion of feminist and female perspectives is essential for the genre, and long overdue, there has been less of a focus on version of masculinity portrayed within the genre and the ways in which counter-narratives of masculinity have, or could, be developed. At a time when concepts like, toxic masculinity, are no longer merely academic phrases, but popularly understood concepts, its time to deconstruct masculinity as it appears on the page, the screen, the TV


This edited book will be peer reviewed and will be submitted, although this contract won’t be secured until all abstracts are chosen. We are interested not only in the present controversies and debates within the field of masculinity but also in expanding the debate and discussion on the topics of superheroes to engage beyond traditional conversations of masculinity to include queer and trans perspectives. Possible topics might include:


  • Abelism 
  • Animal activism
  • Body image 
  • Comic Studies
  • Communication 
  • Critical Race theory 
  • Emotional labor 
  • Feminist Theory
  • Friendships 
  • Film Analysis and theory 
  • History of Gender in comics 
  • Intersectionality 
  • Marxist Analysis
  • Marriage 
  • Media Studies 
  • Militarism 
  • Notions of becoming
  • Queer Theory 
  • Post/Trans humanism 
  •  Sexuality
  • Social Reproduction 
  • Television 
  • Trans issues in comics 
  • Violence


Please direct any questions and 300-500 word abstracts along with a 150 word bio to Dr. JL Schatz (debate@binghamton.edu) and Dr. Sean Parson (sean.parson@nau.edu) by May 7th, 2018. Final pieces will be approximately 5,000 to 7,000 words.


We will notify authors of their acceptance no later than May 21st, 2018.

CFP Edited Collection: BOOM! #*@&! Splat: Comics and Violence (expired)

Sorry. Yet another missed call.

Edited Collection: BOOM! #*@&! Splat: Comics and Violence
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2018/04/11/edited-collection-boom-splat-comics-and-violence

deadline for submissions:
May 31, 2018

full name / name of organization:
Jo Davis-McElligatt, PhD & Jim Coby, PhD

contact email:
joannacdavis@gmail.com



BOOM! #*@&! Splat: Comics and Violence

In the introduction to Seduction of the Innocent, Frederic Wertham suggested that “chronic stimulation, temptation and seduction by comic books [...] are contributing factors to many children’s maladjustment” (10). Anxious that children would be forever corrupted by the content of comics, Wertham identified representations and structures of violence as among his primary objections to comics narrative: “Here is violence galore, violence in the beginning, in the middle, and at the end” (8). Though anxieties regarding representations of violence in comics have largely fallen to the wayside, thematic and symbolic visual depictions of violence remain central to the comics form. From Captain America punching his way into the American consciousness to Phoebe Gloeckner’s depictions of sexual abuse, violence is an integral aspect of the comic medium. Though scholars such as Hillary Chute, Harriet Earle, and Martin Barker have addressed specific trends and/or themes related to violence in comics, such as war, trauma, horror comics, no sustained scholarly inquiry has yet to address this issue.

Our collection, in taking an inclusive and wide-ranging approach to both violence and comics, seeks to understand how the confluence of words and images might ask readers to consider violence in ways unique to the medium. We welcome scholarship from academics of comics and other fields alike. A notable academic press has expressed enthusiastic interest in this project.

Potential avenues for exploration include:

  • Form and structure elements (i.e., symbolia, jagged speech balloons, emanata)
  • Receptions of violence in comics genres (e.g., horror, superhero, war, and adventure)
  • Cultural production and contexts
  • Cartoon and slapstick violence (e.g., Krazy Kat, Calvin and Hobbes)
  • Comics and war/witness (e.g., Joe Sacco, Marjane Satrapi, Art Spiegelman)
  • Physical and psychological family violence (e.g. Alison Bechdel, Craig Thompson, Will Eisner)
  • Sexual violence (e.g., Phoebe Gloeckner, Justin Green)
  • Superhero violence (e.g., Alan Moore, Frank Miller, Jack Kirby, Marvel/DC)
  • History and violence (e.g., John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, & Nate Powell, Keiji Nakazawa, Chester Brown)
  • The grotesque and/or bizarre (e.g., Daniel Clowes, Jason, Charles Burns)
  • Pedagogical approaches to teaching violence in comics

Interested parties should submit bio of 150-200 words and an abstract of approximately 300-500 words to Joanna Davis-McElligatt (jcdmce@louisiana.edu) and Jim Coby (james.coby@uah.edu) by May 31. Contributors will be notified no later than July 30. Completed essay drafts (4000-5000 words) will be due December 15th, 2018.

CFP The Ages of the Black Panther (expired)

Sorry again to have missed this call.

The Ages of the Black Panther: Essays on the King of Wakanda
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2018/02/23/the-ages-of-the-black-panther-essays-on-the-king-of-wakanda

deadline for submissions:
April 1, 2018

full name / name of organization:
Joseph J. Darowski

contact email:
agesofsuperheroes@gmail.com



The editor of The Ages of the Black Panther: Essays on the King of Wakanda is seeking abstracts for essays that could be included in the upcoming collection. The essays should examine the relationships between the Marvel comic book adventures the Black Panther and the social era when those comic books were published. Analysis may demonstrate how Black Panther’s comic books stories and the creators who produced the comics embrace, reflect, or critique aspects of their contemporary culture. This will be a companion volume to existing essay collections in the series that have already focused on Superman, Wonder Woman, the X-Men, the Avengers, Iron Man, the Incredible Hulk, the Justice League, and the Flash.

Potential chapters include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Introducing the Black Panther: Contextualizing the First Appearance
  • From Black Panther to The Panther to Black Leopard and Back Again: Real World Politics and the Name of Marvel’s First Black Superhero
  • An African King Joins The Earth’s Mightiest Heroes
  • Afro-Futurism or Western Paternalism? The Early Appearances of T’Challa
  • The Black Panther’s First Solo Series Was Titled Jungle Action?
  • The First African Superhero Versus the Ku Klux Klan
  • Christopher Priest Retcons the Black Panther’s Early Appearances
  • Adding Everett Ross to the Mix
  • Addressing American Imperialism in the Pages of Comic Books
  • Black Panther and Storm: When Marketing Meets Storytelling
  • Expanding the Wakandan Universe: Sisters, Bodyguards, and Politicians
  • The Black Panther Without Fear: When T’Challa Became Daredevil
  • The Ta-Nehisi Coats Era of Black Panther

Essays should focus on stories featuring Black Panther from his own comic book series or team series. Issues of the the Avengers or other teams that have included Black Panther as a member would be welcome for analysis, so long as the analysis focuses primarily on Black Panther, as would any Marvel mini-series that included Black Panther as a principal character. Similarly, essays focusing on characters that are closely associated with Black Panther would be acceptable. Essays should solely focus on comic book adventures, not media adaptations of the characters. Furthermore, essays should look at a single period of comic book history, rather than drawing comparisons between different publication eras. For example, an essay that analyzed Black Panther comics from the early 1980s and contextualized them with what was happening in American society would be more likely to be accepted than an essay that contrasted 2017 comic books with 1964 comic books. The completed essays should be approximately 15-20 double-spaced pages in MLA format.


Submissions should be sent to Joseph J. Darowski at agesofsuperheroes@gmail.com.

 

CFP 1993-2018: Twenty-Five Years of Vertigo Comics Symposium (expired) (11/8-9/2018)France)

Sorry to have discovered this so late; it sounds like a great project. Do also note the selected bibliography at the end.

1993-2018: Twenty-Five Years of Vertigo Comics
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2017/11/23/1993-2018-twenty-five-years-of-vertigo-comics

deadline for submissions:
April 8, 2018

full name / name of organization:
Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté, Dijon, FRANCE

contact email:
isabel.guillaume@gmail.com


The Vertigo imprint was born in 1993 under the guidance of DC editor Karen Berger; it initially brought together six ongoing series published by DC Comics, notably Swamp Thing, Doom Patrol and Sandman. Those widely successful series were praised for their original, ambitious storylines that sought to break free from narrative and generic conventions. Most of these comics were scripted by British authors whom DC had recruited following Alan Moore’s success on Swamp Thing and Watchmen, forming the bulk of what was known as the “British Invasion”. From just six ongoing series, Vertigo soon extended its line, establishing itself as a halfway house between the mainstream comics industry and the alternative/independent scene. Vertigo defined its identity as that of a game-changer, championing the progressive ideas put forward by DC’s president Jenette Kahn, who had been instrumental in the reconsideration of creators and in the legitimisation of the comics medium. Vertigo’s most visible commitment was its decision to develop many creator-owned series, whose rights belonged to creators rather than publishers. Beyond its initial success, Vertigo in the 2000s was a home for widely recognised original creations such as Y, the Last Man, Fables or 100 Bullets. The imprint left a lasting mark on the US comics industry; it ushered in the era of star writers, contrasting with the focus on artists that had characterised earlier periods; it pioneered the trade paperback format (TPB, sometimes called “graphic novel”) which played a central role in the medium’s struggle for legitimacy; finally, it destabilized the hegemony of the superhero genre and paved the way for major changes in reader demographics.

However, in recent years, Vertigo’s specific identity has begun to wane as some of its major creators turned to other publishers – for instance, Brian K. Vaughan’s best-selling series Saga is being published by Image Comics, while Garth Ennis took The Boys to Dynamite Entertainment after DC (outside Vertigo) cancelled it. Crucially, in 2013, Karen Berger left the imprint after the 2010 changes that modified creators’ contracts and stripped Vertigo of all its corporate-owned series. The last member of the original Vertigo team, Shelly Bond, was let go in 2016 after she helped Gerard Way set up his new imprint at DC, Young Animal, whose initial four ongoing series included two Vertigo spin-offs, while Vertigo struggled to renew itself.

Twenty-five years after its creation, the label is still standing and has already left a substantial mark. Many of the industry’s top professionals who debuted under Berger and Bond’s stewardship now occupy important positions at other publishers, continuing Vertigo’s legacy. Berger and Bond themselves went on to create their own imprints outside of DC : Berger Books is set to debut in early 2018 with Dark Horse, while Shelly Bond’s Black Crown began publishing under IDW.

During this first French symposium entirely dedicated to Vertigo on the occasion of its twenty-fifth birthday, presenters are invited to tackle these issues from all methodological angles. Suggested areas of investigation include:

  • V for Vertigo: The consistency and specificity (or lack thereof) of the Vertigo line as opposed to other publishers and imprints (DC’s own DC universe, its imprints Helix and Wildstorm, and rivals such as Image comics, Avatar Press, Marvel Max…);
  • Vertigo Remediated: Vertigo and the contemporary developments of the comics industry towards more transmedial integration (through TV adaptations, video games, etc.);
  •  Vertigo Vindicates: Vertigo’s legitimizing role and the evolution of the highbrow / lowbrow divide;
  • The British Invasion: the importance of British scriptwriters in the comics industry and the depiction of Britishness in the comics and their paratext;
  • Vertigo Visions: the importance of Vertigo in the renewal of American production in terms of genre, narrative etc.;
  • Editors extraordinaire: the role played by Jenette Kahn, Karen Berger and Shelly Bond;
  • L, G, B, T, V: queer and feminist discourses within the imprint.

Proponents wishing to focus on an individual title are invited to elaborate on the significance the title has in Vertigo’s history, how it compares to other comics with the same theme or period, and how it sheds light on the editorial development of the imprint.

The symposium will be held on November 8th and 9th at the Maison des Sciences de l’Homme at Université de Bourgogne Franche-Comté in Dijon, France. Presentations can be given in French or in English and should not last longer than 30 minutes in order to allow time for questions.

Proposals should be approximately 300 words long, and can be sent in French or in English before April 8th 2018 along with a short biography of the author.

Please send proposals to both members of the organising committee.



Organising committee:

Isabelle Licari-Guillaume (Université Bordeaux Montaigne) isabel.guillaume@gmail.com

Siegfried Würtz (Université de Bourgogne Franche-Comté) siegfried.wurtz@gmail.com



Scientific Committee:

Jean-Paul Gabilliet, Université Bordeaux Montaigne

Henri Garric, Université de Franche-Comté

Nicolas Labarre, Université Bordeaux Montaigne

Irène Langlet, Université de Limoges



Suggested bibliography:

Carpenter, Greg. The British Invasion: Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, Grant Morrison, and the Invention of the Modern Comics Book Writer. Sequart Research & Literacy Organization, 2016. Print.

Dony, Christophe. “Reassessing the Mainstream vs. Alternative/Independent Dichotomy or, the Double Awareness of the Vertigo Imprint.” Comics in Dissent: Alternative, Independence. Ed. Tanguy Habrand, Gert Meesters, and Christophe Dony. Liège: Presses universitaires de Liège, 2014. Print.

---. “The Rewriting Ethos of the Vertigo Imprint: Critical Perspectives on Memory-Making and Canon Formation in the American Comics Field.” Comicalités (2014): n. pag. Web. 20 Sept. 2014. <http://comicalites.revues.org/1918>.

Gabilliet, Jean-Paul. Des comics et des hommes: histoire culturelle des comic books aux États-Unis. Nantes: Éd. du Temps, 2004. Print.

Licari-Guillaume, Isabelle. ‘Vertigo’s British Invasion’: La revitalisation par les scénaristes britanniques des comic books grand public aux États-Unis (1983-2013). PhD dissertation. Université Bordeaux Montaigne, 2017. Print.

Round, Julia. “‘Is This a Book?’ DC Vertigo and the Redefinition of Comics in the 1990s.” The Rise of the American Comics Artist: Creators and Contexts. Ed. Paul Williams and James Lyons. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2010. 14–30. Print.

Saturday, June 30, 2018

CFP The DC Universe Collection (7/31/2018)


The DC Universe
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2018/04/30/the-dc-universe

deadline for submissions: July 31, 2018

full name / name of organization: Alicia Goodman / Texas Tech University

contact email: alicia.goodman@ttu.edu



The DC Universe

Edited by Douglas Brode, Alicia M. Goodman, and Robert G. Weiner

The editors of a forthcoming volume are seeking concise essays of around 5,000 words related to any aspect of the DC Universe. We are seeking pieces that are academically sound, but accessible to the general reader. We want a unique collection of original and interpretive essays about the DC Universe that give original insights about all sorts of aspects related to the Universe DC has built since the 1930s. We are also doing a companion volume looking at the Marvel Universe.

The editors are operating under the premise that the term 'universe' has come to be associated with the vast output of DC in terms of their diverse products: films, TV series, comic books, graphic novels, video games, action figures, and numerous other commercial products featuring their characters. In truth, the term is more significant than simply a catch-all as the DC Universe does indeed offer a unique, organized, and interlocking element that obeys the rules of a true Solar System. We are looking for individual articles focusing on everything from the distinct quality of action figures and/or video games to how specific characters have gradually evolved in film, television, books, comics, graphic novels etc.,

Subjects may include, but are not limited to:

  • DC Elseworlds Universe
  • Race in the DC Universe from the Golden Age to today
  • Sexuality in the DC Universe
  • The Golden Age Universe of DC (early attempts at codifying the DC as one universe JSA etc.)
  • The Multiple Earths and Multiverse
  • DC’s Television Universe (Arrow, The Flash, Constantine, Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl) (The 1950s Superman and Superpup) (1960s Batman and Batgirl pilot) (2000s Wonder Woman pilot, Aquaman, Smallville).
  • DC’s attempt at a cinematic Universe.
  • DC and animation universes Superfriends, Batman (1970s), Batman (1990s) and Superman (1990s), JLA, and other animated programs that tie together.
  • Gender and DC
  • DC Universe and Religion
  • Anti-Heroes in DC (e.g. Lobo)
  • Time Travel in DC
  • What is canon in DC?
  • The DC Westernverse
  • 1950s DC Universe
  • The Cosmic DC Verse
  • Toys related to DC
  • Videogame worlds of DC
  • Villainy in DC
  • The perfect Superhero in the DC Universe
  • The Dark DC Universe
  • The key figures in the creation of DC (Bill Finger, Jerry Siegel, Denny O’ Neil, Neal Adams, Scott Synder, Grant Morrison, Alan Moore, Jerry Robinson, etc.,)

Please send a 200-500 word abstract to Douglas Brode dougbrode@msn.com and Alicia Goodman alicia.goodman@ttu.edu by July 31st , 2018. Please note that submission of an abstract and/or paper does not guarantee publication.

CFP Mixed Race/Superheroes Collection (7/1/2018)

Great idea for a collection; my apologies for having come across it so late:

Mixed Race/Superheroes
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2018/04/05/mixed-racesuperheroes

deadline for submissions: July 1, 2018

full name / name of organization: Sika Dagbovie-Mullins and Eric Berlatsky

contact email: sdagbovi@fau.edu



Call for Papers

Mixed-Race/Superheroes (co-edited by Eric Berlatsky and Sika Dagbovie-Mullins)

One of Marvel’s earliest superheroes, Prince Namor (aka the Sub-Mariner), could be considered one of the first symbolically mixed-race superheroes due to his both human and Atlantean lineage. According to this logic, one could identify other half-humans in this category, including recent iterations of Wonder Woman (half-Amazon, half goddess), Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers (half-human, half-Kree) and the Marvel version of Hercules (half-human, half-god). The Marvel universe has also more recently introduced more conventionally mixed-race characters such as Miles Morales (the ultimate Spider-Man) and Danielle Cage (daughter of Luke Cage and Jessica Jones). The editors are currently seeking essays that focus on (literal, metaphorical, or symbolic) representations of racial mixedness and related issues (hybridity, belonging/nonbelonging, racial authenticity and “purity,” passing, racial alienation, post-racialism) in superhero texts (comics, films, television shows, etc.).
These may include but are not limited to:

  • mixed race actors who play superheroes on film/TV (Halle Berry in Catwoman and the original X-Men film franchise, Zendaya in Spiderman: Homecoming, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie in Thor: Ragnarok, Jessica Alba in Fantastic Four, Keiynan Lonsdale as Kid Flash in the Flash television show, Dwayne Johnson in the upcoming Shazam franchise, Jason Momoa as Aquaman, Eartha Kitt as Catwoman in the 1960s Batman TV show)
  • literal or symbolic mixed-race characters in superhero comics, films, or TV shows (Miles Morales/Ultimate Spider-Man, New 52 Wally West/Kid Flash, Liz Toomes in Spider-Man: Homecoming, Superman or Supergirl [Kryptonians raised by humans], Daken -- son of Wolverine and Itsu, Kamala Khan/Ms. Marvel, Barry Allen in the Flash TV show [a white child raised by an African-American father figure], The Mongrels – children of Wolverine, Tobias Whale [both black and albino] in the Black Lightning TV series)
  • metaphors of racial mixedness in franchises such as X-Men and/or the Inhumans
  • representations of superherodom and racial mixedness in popular culture such as Obama/Calvin Ellis as Superman in Final Crisis and other Grant Morrison stories and/or images of Obama as Superman in popular media

Please send 500-word abstract submissions (with tentative paper titles and abbreviated CVs) to sdagbovi@fau.edu and eberlats@fau.edu by July 1st.

Friday, June 29, 2018

CFP Supersex: Essays on Sexuality, Fantasy, and the Superhero (expired)

An expired call, but a collection worth looking out for:

Supersex: Essays on Sexuality, Fantasy, and the Superhero
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2017/10/20/supersex-essays-on-sexuality-fantasy-and-the-superhero

deadline for submissions:
December 20, 2017

full name / name of organization:
Anna Peppard/York University

contact email:
annapeppard@yahoo.ca



CFP for Academic Anthology


Supersex: Essays on Sexuality, Fantasy, and the Superhero


Within the superhero genre, sexuality has often been simultaneously gratuitous and invisible. Though many superheroes wear their underwear on the outside and proudly display their hard and sensuous curves inside revealing, skin-tight costumes, historical censorship and related, prevailing assumptions about the superhero genre being primarily intended for children have meant that when superheroes get banged up and laid out, it tends to be in a fight rather than in the bedroom. Some things have, of course, changed over time. Within the past decade, in particular, superhero comics and the superhero movies, television shows, cartoons, and video games they have inspired have become increasingly diverse and adult-oriented: in comics, we have seen Batman have sex with Catwoman on a rooftop and seen Iceman, a founding member of the X-Men, come out as gay; in movies, we have seen Deadpool bend over to celebrate International Women’s Day; in television, we have seen Jessica Jones and Luke Cage’s superpowered passion break a bed frame; and in the popular subgenre of superhero porn parodies, we have seen a great deal more. Yet even now, a simultaneous presence and absence remains. Circa 2017, most mainstream superhero comics, films, and television shows continue to prioritize sexiness while pushing the actual business of sexuality off-panel/off-screen. In addition, fans remain divided about whether and how sexuality should be presented in the superhero genre. Even as some fans vocally advocate for more sexual diversity, other, equally vocal fans complain that there is already too much diversity; still other fans continue to insist that sexuality has no place in superhero stories. Meanwhile, in academia: while gender is a relatively common topic within existing scholarship on the superhero genre, sexuality has only been sporadically considered, with no existing books or journals dedicated to the topic.

Supersex: Essays on Sexuality, Fantasy, and the Superhero will make visible the modes and meanings of this simultaneous presence and absence by examining the superhero genre’s complicated relationship with sexuality in as many ways and places as possible. Chapters may focus on past or present representations of sexuality in either mainstream productions or in those Underground, “indie,” or fan-based productions which have commented on, critiqued, or revised the mainstream. Ideally, this collection will bring into conversation diverse scholarly approaches exploring an equally diverse collection of texts, from Marvel and DC’s all-ages content to various revisionist narratives and parodies, as well as fanfiction, sanctioned and unsanctioned erotic art and pornography, and cosplay culture. Chapters on international (i.e. non-American) subject matter will be considered, with the caveat that such chapters must take cultural context into account, and relate themselves in some way to the American culture that originated the superhero genre and continues to dominate its production. Similarly, chapters that consider subject matter whose relationship to the superhero genre is not immediately obvious must make a case as to why such subject matter is worth considering under the superhero banner. Analyses that consider content in relation to form are especially encouraged, as are intersectional approaches, i.e., chapters that consider superhero sexuality in conjunction with gender, disability, race, etc. All chapters must address the relationship between some aspect of sexuality and the conventions of the superhero genre, including, but not limited to, costumes, superpowers, secret identities, bodily transformations, the physical enactment of Manichean conflicts, etc.

Those interested in participating in this collection are asked to send a max. 500-word abstract and a max. 1-page prospective bibliography as well as a 50-word bio to Anna Peppard at annapeppard@yahoo.ca no later than December 20th, 2017. All proposals will be adjudicated by December 31st, 2017 with first drafts of accepted chapters due March 31th, 2018.

CFP ComiqueCon: Celebrating Women in Comics (7/31/2018; Dearborn 10/13/2018)


ComiqueCon: Celebrating Women in Comics
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2018/06/23/comiquecon-celebrating-women-in-comics

deadline for submissions: July 31, 2018

full name / name of organization: ComiqueCon

contact email: kinoclub313wsu@gmail.com



Call for Papers:

ComiqueCon (Dearborn, MI)


Deadline for submissions:

July 31, 2018


Conference location/date:

October 13, 2018; Arab American National Museum, Dearborn, Michigan



The goal of this conference:

ComiqueCon is a one-day celebration of the amazing work of female and non-binary comic creators. Join us in Metro Detroit for this one-of-a-kind event, and check out our featured guests, awesome sponsors, and talented exhibitors!

This year's ComiqueCon will include an academic track with paper presentations and workshops related to the general theme of women in comics. Papers should be accessible to a general audience; please be sure to define your terms and give context for any theoretical or discipline-specific arguments you reference.



Topics might include the following:

  • Comics, graphic novels, sequential art, manga and feminist theory
  • Women in the comics industry – writers, artists, editors, shop owners, etc.
  • Intersectional identities in comics and graphic novels
  • The comics industry and #MeToo, #Comicsgate, and sexual harassment culture
  • Representation of women in comics and related texts – superhero films, action figures, merchandise, promotional materials, etc.
  • Queer representations of women in comics
  • Representation of motherhood and maternity in comics
  • Genre-specific representations of women (in romance comics as compared to action comics, for example)


Paper Proposals: Paper proposals must include an abstract of 300-500 words and an author biography of 100 words or less. Pre-constituted panels of three to four presenters are also welcome, and should include, in addition to individual paper abstracts and biographies, a 150-200 word panel proposal that details the way the papers connect together and how the panel will engage with the conference theme.

Workshops: Workshops may have up to three facilitators. Workshop proposals must include a brief explanation of topic (250-500 words), a list of facilitators, and a biography of 100 words or less for each facilitator. Workshop proposals should be skill-focused and can be: creative (making comics, zines, fan art, etc.) or pedagogy-oriented (how to teach with comics, etc.).



Due Date:

July 31, 2018


Presenters will be notified of acceptance into the conference via email by August 17, 2018.


All inquiries and proposals should be sent to kinoclub313wsu@gmail.com.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

CFP Batman in Popular Culture Conference (12/30/2018; Bowling Green 4/12-13/2019)

Sounds like a great idea for a conference:

CFP: Batman in Popular Culture
https://www.comicgesellschaft.de/en/2018/04/13/cfp-batman-in-popular-culture/

Conference
The Department of Popular Culture and the Browne Popular Culture Library
Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green
April 12 - 13, 2019
Stichtag: 2018 12 30

The Department of Popular Culture and the Browne Popular Culture Library at Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio are proud to announce the Batman in Popular Culture Conference on Friday, April 12 and Saturday, April 13, 2019. The Batman in Popular Culture conference aims to examine Batman in Popular Culture in all mediums and media. It is intended to serve as a space for academics, graduate students, comic industry professionals, retailers and fans to engage in dialogue about topics related to Batman in its many media forms, mediums and cultural influence in popular culture and beyond. The scope of this conference is deliberately broad, with the intention of highlighting the interdisciplinary nature and many different avenues of research possible related to Batman in Popular Culture.

Possible topics might include but are not limited to:

  • Textual analysis of graphic novels, storylines, other texts related to Batman
  • In-depth analysis of particular authors & artists work related to Batman
  • The development of supporting characters, villains, and themes within the Batman mythos
  • Batman in Popular Music
  • Batman in Film, Television, and Animation
  • The rise of Batman-centric podcasts
  • Batman as a mass merchandising phenomenon
  • Batman VS. Superman
  • Batman and video games
  • The role of diversity issues (race, gender, ethnicity, sexuality) within Batman’s world
  • Batman within the Comics Industry (writing, drawing, retailing, etc.)
  • Batman art and covers across the decades
  • How authors build an audience in an era of subgenre specialization
  • Reception and fan communities for Batman and the superhero genre
  • Digital Humanities approaches to Comics and Mass Media Studies with emphasis on Batman

We welcome individual proposals or pre-formed panels that address any or all of these themes. As the conference seeks to provide a multitude of perspectives, academic presentations and those from outside the academy are welcome.

Please send a 300-word abstract describing your individual presentation to bgsubatman@gmail.com with “Batman in Popular Culture” in the subject line. (Panel, roundtable, performance, and artistic display proposals should include a 300 proposal for each individual and a 500-word proposal explaining the group presentation.) Submissions should be sent in a document attachment with the following information:

Author’s name/Title
Institutional Affiliation (if applicable)
Email address
Presentation Title and Abstract

Deadline for Submissions is Monday, December 30, 2018.

Sunday, June 24, 2018

CFP Superheroes and Disability: Unmasking Ableism in the Media Collection (7/27/2018)


Seeking Book Chapters: Superheroes and Disability: Unmasking Ableism in the Media
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2018/06/08/seeking-book-chapters-superheroes-and-disability-unmasking-ableism-in-the-media

deadline for submissions:
July 27, 2018

full name / name of organization:
Amber E. George & JL Schatz

contact email:
mediaanddisability@gmail.com



Superheroes and Disability: Unmasking Ableism in the Media

Both disability studies and comic studies are a continually growing field for academic departments across the globe. Scholars have noticed the increasing presence of their intellectual approaches in political and philosophical theorizing both inside and outside of the academy. In fact, the growing popularity of superheroes confronting disability has led to a litany of scattered publications and essays about supercrips and other discriminatory representations that associate disability with villainy. However, there has yet to be a collection that focuses exclusively on unmasking ableism and ability privilege inherent in popular superhero representations. This collection targets mainstream consumers who are interested in disability studies and enjoy watching superhero movies and reading comics. By helping readers understand the intersection of media representation and real-world connections to disability, this collection proves that media is never neutral and that not all superheroes fight on the side of good, even if that is their goal.

This collection explores representations of disability in the media using critical disability studies, media studies, cultural studies, and other interdisciplinary fields. Activists, academics, artists, and allies are invited to submit a 250-300 word abstract for the collection along with a 100-word bio by July 27th, 2018 to mediaanddisability@gmail.com. We are particularly interested in chapters that are interdisciplinary in scope and have an interest in liberation and anti-oppressive politics, as well as ones that are focused on alternatives instead of open-ended critiques.

We are interested in essays that explore disability from the ever-shifting and changing definitions of biological impairment, espoused by the medical model, to that of disability as a cultural phenomenon. This anthology will attempt to highlight the social and political factors that give rise to medicalization and the subsequent demonization of disability. We are interested in narratives that disrupt and challenge predominant negative assumptions about disability from an intersectional perspective. New frameworks, interpretations, and analysis that empower people with disabilities are particularly important. As such, we are open to a wide interpretation of what counts as a superhero within the media. We’d like contributors to explore new perspectives on disability that may include an analysis of both people with disabilities as producers, consumers, and product of media related to superheroes. We invite the exploration of disability identity, culture, and intersections with other disciplines such as critical race theory, gender studies, and the other viewpoints.

Our goal for this text is to increase awareness of disability in the media, and highlight disability perspectives that are sometimes misappropriated, misused, or missing altogether. The goal is to offer solutions to how these representations, and our relationship to them, can be changed. Topics of interest may include, but are not limited to the following categories, all of which are contextualized within media:

  • Disability in relation to comic studies in general
  • Superheroes in activism and community organizing around disability
  • Casting choices for superheroes with disabilities
  • Disability and animality in relation to superheroes
  • Disability and bioethics in relation to cyborg superheroes
  • Disability in children specific superhero programming
  • The use of superheroes and disability in advertising
  • Analysis of overcoming narratives as heroic
  • Disability and classism in relation to superheroes
  • Disability, culture, and identity in relation to superheroes
  • Disability as metaphor in relation to superheroes
  • Disability and music in relation to superheroes
  • Disability and race in relation to superheroes
  • Disability and sexuality in relation to superheroes
  • Disability and science-fiction or fantasy in relation to superheroes
  • Supercrip in relation to superheroes
  • Disability as villainy in superhero representations
  • Ecology and disability in relation to superheroes
  • Specific interpretations of individual superheroes in film, television, or comics
  • Invisible disabilities in relation to superheroes
  • Medical and social models of disability in relation to superheroes
  • Queering disability in relation to superheroes
  • Instructional pieces geared to how to guide conversations on disability and superheroes

All abstracts must be written in English (250-300 words) and contain title, name(s) of the author(s) and contact information (institutional affiliation, mailing address, and email address), as well as a short 100-word biography. The deadline for submissions is July 27st, 2018. We will inform people no later than August 11th, 2018 of their acceptance. Please submit your proposal to mediaanddisability@gmail.com. Feel free to contact us if you should have any questions or ideas for a chapter.


Sincerely,

Dr. Amber E. George & Dr. JL Schatz

Friday, January 19, 2018

CFP Page 23 LitCon at Denver Comic Con 2018 (3/1/2018; 6/15-17/2018)

Page 23 LitCon at Denver Comic Con 2018
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2018/01/05/page-23-litcon-at-denver-comic-con-2018

deadline for submissions:
March 1, 2018


full name / name of organization:
Page 23/Denver Comic Con


contact email:
page23@popcultureclassroom.org




Call for Papers, Panels, and Presentations

Page 23 LitConJune 15-17, 2018



500-word abstracts for papers, panels, and roundtables, offering a critical approach on comics and pop culture are being accepted for a scholarly conference at

DENVER COMIC CON at the Colorado Convention Center DENVER, CO June 15-17, 2018



Greetings, True Believer! Now in its Super Seventh Year, Page 23’s LitCon seeks abstracts from all disciplinary and theoretical perspectives related not only to comics and graphic novels, but gaming, television, film, anime, or action figure studies. Any pop culture topic is welcome!



We’re especially interested in:
  • Panels centering on pop culture pedagogy, aimed at current teachers at all levels
  • Papers addressing diversity of race, class, gender, neurology, sexuality, and ability in comics, and how those issues might be impacted by our current socio-political climate
  • Papers or panels discussing the works of guests attending Denver Comic Con! (see https://denvercomiccon.com/ for a list of attendees)
  • Proposals for pop culture-related play readings, creative writing workshops, slam poetry events, fiction readings, epic rap battles, and other fare beyond the traditional literary conference milieu



Page 23 LitCon has no registration fee and acceptance includes a three-day pass to Denver Comic Con!



Please email abstracts and brief personal statements to page23@popcultureclassroom.org by March 1st, 2018

Last updated January 7, 2018

CFP Comics Arts Conference: Comic-Con International (2/1/2018; San Diego 7/19-7/22/2018)


Comics Arts Conference: Comic-Con International

Announcement published by Kathleen McClancy on Tuesday, January 16, 2018
https://networks.h-net.org/node/73374/announcements/1248430/comics-arts-conference-comic-con-international

Type: Conference
Date: July 19, 2018 to July 22, 2018
Location: California, United States


The Comics Arts Conference is now accepting 100 to 200 word abstracts for papers, presentations, panels, and poster sessions taking a critical or historical perspective on comics (juxtaposed images in sequence) for a meeting of scholars and professionals at Comic-Con International, San Diego, CA, July 19 - 22, 2018. We seek proposals from a broad range of disciplinary and theoretical perspectives and welcome the participation of academic and independent scholars. We also encourage the involvement of professionals from all areas of the comics industry, including creators, editors, publishers, retailers, distributors, and journalists. The CAC is designed to bring together comics scholars, professionals, critics, and historians to engage in discussion of the comics medium in a forum that includes the public. Proposals due February 1, 2018 to the CAC submission form at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/BZD3DRD or via email to comicsartsconference@gmail.com. For more information, please see the CAC website at http://comicsartsconference.wp.txstate.edu or contact comicsartsconference@gmail.com.
Contact Info:


Dr. Kathleen McClancy, Primary Organizer and Co-Chair
Contact Email:
comicsartsconference@gmail.com
URL:
http://comicsartsconference.wp.txstate.edu

Monday, November 20, 2017

CFP Images of Blackness in Graphic Novels, Past and Future (1/1/2018)

Call for Papers: Images of Blackness in Graphic Novels, Past and Future
Discussion published by Brian Yates on Friday, November 17, 2017
https://networks.h-net.org/node/12834/discussions/864327/call-papers-images-blackness-graphic-novels-past-and-future
 

This edited volume will offer an opportunity for authors to investigate the ways in which blackness is reimagined in both mainstream and independent comics. Specifically, I propose responding to the following questions: What are the ways in which heroism is redefined by black characters? How are black futures reimagined? What gendered arguments are made through this medium? What are the challenges in presenting to black audiences in this largely white genre? How do the creators depict the continent of Africa and/or communities in the African Diaspora? How are black bodies presented in graphic comics and novels? Finally, how are themes of social justice specific to black communities presented in this type of medium?

This volume would address the above questions in addition to the themes indicated below.
  • Black Futurism
  • Black Femininity
  • Black Masculinity
  • Imagery of Blackness
  • Conceptions of Africa and/or Diaspora
  • Black Bodies in Comics
  • The Use of Comics for Social Change
  • Narratives of publishing Black-themed Graphic Novels and Comics

All submissions should include a 200-word abstract. Finalized contributions should be sent as Microsoft Word and/ or JPEG attachment by January 1, 2018. Articles will be in English. Please send an email to byates@sju.edu for instructions to submit via Dropbox. In terms of submission requirements, utilize FIRE!!!’s style guide located at http://fire-jbs.org/ under the author’s tab.



Friday, September 8, 2017

CFP GRAPHIC NOVELS at CEA 2018 (11/1/2017; CEA 2018)

A bit vague of a call (is it an area/division, a session, or something else?), but it seems worth a look; comics-related info in red below:


GRAPHIC NOVELS at CEA 2018
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2017/08/18/graphic-novels-at-cea-2018


deadline for submissions: November 1, 2017

full name / name of organization: College English Association (CEA)

contact email: wardj@phsc.edu



Subject: Call for Papers: GRAPHIC NOVELS at CEA 2018



Call for Papers, GRAPHIC NOVELS at CEA 2018

April 5-7, 2018 | St. Petersburg, Florida

Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront

333 1st St South, Saint Petersburg, Florida 33701 | Phone: (727) 894-5000

The College English Association, a gathering of scholar-teachers in English studies, welcomes proposals for presentations on [special topic title] for our 49th annual conference. Submit your proposal at http://cea-web.org/

CEA seeks papers exploring graphic novels as literary works that serve as tools for teaching students through traditional analysis as novels and/or by providing new perspectives or insights about the human condition.

Conference Theme

CEA welcomes proposals for presentations on the general conference theme: Bridges. The Sunshine Skyway Bridge crosses Tampa Bay from St. Petersburg, called the Sunshine City in honor of its Guinness Record for most consecutive days of sunshine (768). St. Petersburg is home to historic neighborhoods, distinguished museums, contemporary galleries, and a wide variety of dining, entertainment and shopping venues. St. Petersburg is also home to the College English Association’s 2018 national conference, where we invite you to join us at our annual meeting to explore the many bridges that connect places, texts, communities, words, and ideas.

CEA invites proposals from academics in all areas of literature, language, film, composition, pedagogy, and creative, professional, and technical writing. We are especially interested in presentations that build bridges between and among texts, disciplines, people, cultures, media, languages, and generations.

For your proposal you might consider:
Bridges between disciplines, languages, or generations
Bridges between races, classes, cultures, regions, genders, or sexualities.
Cultural or ideological bridges in literary, scholarly, or theoretical works
The bridge as construct, form, metaphor, motif, or icon
Connections between text and images or sound
Bridges between theory and practice, reading and writing, writer and audience
Building bridges between teaching and scholarship; faculty and administrators; professors and students
Bridges as physical artifacts and symbols of industry and technology
Digital humanities as a bridge between worlds
What bridges connect, support, and pass over

General Call for Papers

CEA also welcomes proposals for presentations in any of the areas English departments typically encompass, including literature criticism and scholarship, creative writing, composition, technical communication, linguistics, and film. We also welcome papers on areas that influence our work as academics, including student demographics, student/instructor accountability and assessment, student advising, academic leadership in departments and programs, and the place of the English department in the university.



Submission: August 15-November 1, 2017



For more information on how to submit, please see the full CFP at http://cea-web.org/




Membership
All presenters at the 2018 CEA conference must become members of CEA by January 1, 2018. To join CEA, please go to http://cea-web.org/

Other questions? Please email cea.english@gmail.com.



Sincerely,



Joseph J. Ward

Assistant Professor

Pasco Hernando State College

Porter Campus at Wiregrass Ranch

2727 Mansfield Boulevard

Wesley Chapel, Florida 33543

(813) 527-6830

wardj@phsc.edu




Last updated September 5, 2017



CFP From Smallville to Metropolis: Navigating Space and Place in Comics and Their Adaptations (9/30/2017; NeMLA 2018)

NeMLA seems set to be a hotbed of comics scholarship in 2018. Here's another call:


From Smallville to Metropolis: Navigating Space and Place in Comics and Their Adaptations (NeMLA 2018, Pittsburgh, PA, 4/12-4/15/2018)
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2017/09/05/from-smallville-to-metropolis-navigating-space-and-place-in-comics-and-their


deadline for submissions: September 30, 2017

full name / name of organization: Lisa Perdigao, Florida Institute of Technology

contact email: lperdiga@fit.edu




From Smallville to Metropolis: Navigating Space and Place in Comics and Their Adaptations

Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA) Conference 2018

Pittsburgh, PA

April 12-15, 2018

Scott Bukatman writes that “The experience of the city (and the comic book) is less one of static order than dynamic negotiation” (174), particularly in the superhero genre. Many superheroes are identified with specific cities (Superman’s Metropolis, Batman’s Gotham, Spider-Man’s New York City, Arrow’s Star City, and the Flash’s Central City) and neighborhoods (Daredevil and Jessica Jones’ Hell’s Kitchen, Luke Cage’s Harlem, and Iron Fist’s K’un-Lun, Manhattan, and Chinatown). This panel seeks papers exploring the ways that cities and towns are mapped and renegotiated in comics and/or their adaptations. As they "move through space in a special way” (Gotto 47), superheroes suggest distinct ways of viewing, experiencing, and negotiating urban and suburban landscapes. Papers may focus on superhero narratives or works in other genres (e.g., Sin City, Riverdale, iZombie, The Walking Dead, and Fun Home).

General inquiries to lperdiga@fit.edu

To submit an abstract, go to https://www.cfplist.com/nemla/Home/S/17044

categories

Last updated September 6, 2017

CFP Of Superpowers and Privilege: Diversity in Superhero Narratives (Roundtab;e) (9/30/2017; NeMLA 2018)

NeMLA 2018 Roundtable CFP - Of Superpowers and Privilege: Diversity in Superhero Narratives
https://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/cfp/2017/09/03/nemla-2018-roundtable-cfp-of-superpowers-and-privilege-diversity-in-superhero

deadline for submissions: September 30, 2017

full name / name of organization: Mary Ellen Iatropoulos / Northeast Modern Language Association

contact email: maryiatrop@gmail.com


The word “diversity” has been thrown around a lot lately in the world of superhero narratives. The last two years have featured an increased diversity in Marvel Comics’ set of characters and creative staff, with Ta-Nehisi Coates’s work on Black Panther, G. Willow Wilson’s co-creation of Ms. Marvel, the character Jane Foster being deemed worthy of Mjolnir and with it the name Thor, and Riri Williams taking over the role of Iron Man from Tony Stark. At the same time, Marvel has faced criticism for whitewashing of films such as Doctor Strange, and a refusal to increase diversity in casting with its main character taking on the white savior narrative in Iron Fist. While creators and editors at Marvel have taken steps to increase diversity, the company’s vice president of sales, David Gabriel, recently blamed “diversity” for slumping sales. Fans’ backlash to such failure to increase diversity, even to blame diversity, demonstrates that, for all the repetition of the word “diversity,” its ideals are far from its implementation.

As each case shows, what it means for a story, comic, or film to be “diverse” and “have diversity” can change from context to context. While diversity as an idea seems to be everywhere, at least in conversation, this session determines to investigate diversity in actual representation. This roundtable session seeks papers investigating how “diversity” has manifested in twenty-first century superhero narratives, and to what ends. How has “diversity” manifested in 21st-century superhero narratives, and to what ends? To what degree are recent conversations regarding diversity in superhero narratives indicative of social progress being made (or not)? How do corporate experiments with diversity subvert or reinforce institutional oppression of marginalized groups? What’s the interplay between attempts at diversity on screen and “diversity” in real life?

To submit an abstract to this roundtable CFP. you must first create an account and log-in for the NeMLA online abstract submissions system. All abstracts must be submitted via each presenter's own user account. Abstracts submitted by email will not be considered.

For more info and to create an account, please visit www.nemla.org.

Last updated September 7, 2017

Sunday, August 6, 2017

CFP Comics and Authorship (Spec Issue of Authorship) (8/31/17)

An intriguing call for papers:

CFP: Comics and Authorship (Authorship 6.2) - Deadline Extended!
Announcement published by Maaheen Ahmed on Wednesday, July 12, 2017
https://networks.h-net.org/node/73374/announcements/186830/cfp-comics-and-authorship-authorship-62-deadline-extended

Type: Call for Papers
Date: August 31, 2017


CFP Authorship special issue:

Comics and Authorship


The comic, recently legitimized through the graphic novel phenomenon while remaining anchored in popular culture, can provide unique insights into issues surrounding authorship. Although comics scholarship has explored autobiographical comics and the strategies for self-fashioning of individual canonized comics artists and writers, the complex and mutating concept of comic book authorship remains by and large overlooked.

Analyses of the changing notions of authorship, their contextualization and implications - aesthetic, political, economic - across different comics genres and formats can provide answers to key questions, such as:
  • How do different techniques and styles mold conceptions of the author?
  • Who is the author in large franchises and studio collaborations?
  • What are the claims to authorship of vital but often overlooked mediators such as letterers and inkers?
  • How do conceptions of authorship vary with publishing format (serial comic book, graphic novel, syndicated comic strip, self-published fanzine)?

In this special issue dedicated to comics, the open-access journal Authorship seeks to specify the range and potential of the terrain covered by comics and authorship through bringing together papers on the following, broad aspects:
  • Roles encompassed by the notion of authorship in comics (writer, artist, letterer, inker, penciller)
  • Differences in constructions of authorship across formats, genres, cultures and history
  • Self-creation of author (and auteur) personas through paratextual elements
  • Self-reflection on authorship in comics, cartoons and graphic novels
  • Issues of authorship raised by adaptations of comics in other media such as novels and films.

Please send articles (ca. 5000 words) to Maaheen Ahmed (ahmedmaaheen@gmail.com) by 31 August 2017. The issue will be published in December 2017.



Author guidelines can be consulted here (but please send submissions via e-mail to the address mentioned above).
Contact Email:
ahmedmaaheen@gmail.com

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Spider-Man: Season One Revisited

Marvel's Season One series was established (like DC's Earth One series) to present more contemporary origins of its classic characters. Cullen Bunn's Spider-Man: Season One (2012) is a worthy attempt at reworking (and expanding) the hero's origin from Amazing Fantasy No. 15. To start, Bunn focuses much of the story on the perspective of our young hero, and we get a really good sense of Peter Parker here and all of the motivations that make him become Spider-Man, first as an entertainer and later as a hero. We also have a much more developed relationship between Peter and his Uncle Ben, so readers really feel for Peter when Ben is killed. Finally, Bunn gives us two Spider-Foes, both the Vulture and J. Jonah Jameson. The Vulture is very much the classic character we've come to know over the years, but Bunn adds some nuances to JJJ that really make him someone we want to hate.

Further details on the graphic novel can be found on Marvel's website at http://marvel.com/comics/issue/39689/spider-man_season_one_2011_1.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Thoughts on Wonder Woman: Earth One

Grant Morrison's Wonder Woman: Earth One (2016) offers an interesting new take on the origin of the popular character. The Earth One series is sort of modern version of the Elseworlds imprint and presents contemporary reinterpretations of DCs various heroes.

Wonder Woman: Earth One is a new origin for Wonder Woman best received by mature readers. It pays much homage to past representations of the character of Princess Diana if Themyscria and her legend while also largely updating the figure for today by focusing on the need for the Amazons to concern themselves with Man's World once more. However, there are some issues to be aware of.

First up, purists might take offense that Steve Trevor is now an African American soldier sent specifically in search of Paradise Island by the U. S. military. In Morrison's defense, he is still a good character, and the changes are not much of big deal in an era of race-free casting. Plus, Morrison makes his background a central part of his willingness to help Diana.

Second, and most disturbing, the book relishes in images of violence and (especially) bondage. Morrison seems to include these aspects to link back to Marston's original concepts for the character, but they are very unsettling and push the book into more adult territory.

Finally,  the book also rewrites the myth of Diana's creation, a now frequent occurrence, and (spoiler warning) makes her a mythological test tube baby formed from combining one of Hippolyta's egg with sperm taken from Hercules, the Amazon's oppressor millennia ago.

Further information on the book at http://www.dccomics.com/graphic-novels/wonder-woman-earth-one-2016/wonder-woman-earth-one-vol-1.