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[cfp] Heroes (not Superheroes) in Contemporary Comic Books (Conference Panel)

Posted 20 Feb, 2008

Panel for the 2007 Midwest Popular Culture Association / Midwest American Culture Association Conference in Cincinnati, OH, October 3-5

Panel Title: 'Heroes (not Superheroes) in Contemporary Comic Books'

Deadline for submissions: April 30, 2008

This panel is interested in the describing representations of identity outside the mainstream superhero comic books industry. In particular, this panel seeks to work with prominent authors such as Will Eisner, Harvey Pekar, Gilbert Hernandez, Marjane Satrapi, Chris Ware, and others. Identity can be defined in a number of ways with models that range from the archetypal hero who lives within an epic story to the existential protagonist who is lost within a deconstructive narrative.

Possible topics include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • The linguistic and visual complexity of the autobiographical hero seen in the works of Harvey Pekar, David B., Marjane Satrapi, and Seth
  • The development of ethnic and religious identities, particularly Jewish identity, in the works of Will Eisner, Art Speigelman, Ben Katchor, and Joann Sfar
  • The aesthetics of violence and the warrior hero in the works of Franks Miller, Garth Ennis, and Brian Azzarello
  • The nature of sexuality and self-discovery in the works of the Hernandez brothers, Charles Burns, and Daniel Clowes
  • The connection between imagination and self in the works of Dave McKean, Neil Gaiman, and Bill Willingham
  • The relationship between individualism, the creative process, and the comic book industry in the works of Will Einser, Dave Sim, Dave McKean, and Daniel Clowes
  • The redefinition the protagonist through the redefinition the visual experience of graphic literature in the works of Bill Sienkiewicz, Craig Thompson, and Chris Ware

Please submit a 300-word proposal to Terrence Wandtke at You may include the proposal within the body of the e-mail or attach as a Word document. You may also mail a hard copy to Terrence Wandtke; Division of Communication Arts; Judson University; 1151 North State Street;Elgin, IL 60123-1498. Your e-mail or hard copy proposal must be received by April 30, 2008. Please include your affiliation and contact information.



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