As this documentary is an academic project, it reflects the influence of the work of a number of scholars that represent a variety of disciplines. In addition to a study/discussion guide for instructors (forthcoming), I include below a working bibliography of some of the scholarship critically engaging comic books, graphic arts and sequential art. It is by no means an exhaustive list. Please contact me with additions, corrections, or any other input that will strengthen this bibliography’s value as a resource for others interested in the topic.
Last update 16, July 2011 (many thanks to Tonya Barron and Imani Mandela)
Baron, L. (2003). X-men as J men: The Jewish subtext of a comic book movie. Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies, 22(1), 44-52.
Besel, J. (2010). The captivating, creative, unusual history of comic books. Mankato, MN: Capstone Press
Bongco, M. (2000). Reading comics: language, culture, and the concept of the superhero in comic books. New York: Taylor & Francis.
Brown, J. A. (1999). Comic Book Masculinity and the New Black Superhero. African American Review, 33(1), 25-42.
Brown, J. (2003). Black superheroes, milestone comics, and their fans. Jackson, MS: University of Mississippi Press.
Brunner, E. (2007). “Shuh! ain’t nothin’ to it”: The dynamics of success in Jackie Ormes’s “Torchy Brown.” MELUS, (32) 3, 23-49.
Brunner, E. (2007). Red funnies: The new york daily worker’s “popular front” comics, 1936 –1945. American periodicals: A Journal of History, Criticism, and Bibliography, 17(2), 184-207.
Buhle, P. (2007). History and comics. Reviews in American History, 35(2), 315-323.
Buhle, P. (2007). The left in American comics: Rethinking the visual vernacular. Science & Society, 71(3), 348-356.
Carpenter, S. (2000). Ethnographic Investigations into the Creation of Black Images in Comic Books. Journal of Critical Inquiry Into Curriculum and Instruction},(2)3,21-25.
Carpenter, S.. (2005). Truth be told: Authorship and the creation of the Black Captain America. In J. McLaughlin, (Ed.) Comics as philosophy (46-62). Jackson, MS. University Press of Mississippi.
Chambliss, J. (2008). From pulp hero to superhero: Culture, race, and identity in American popular culture, 1900-1940. Studies in American Culture, 30(1), 1-34
Creekmur, C. (2004). Superheroes and science fiction: Who watches comic books? Science Fiction Studies, 31(2), 283-290.
Cunningham, P. L. (2010). The absence of black supervillains in mainstream comics. Journal of Graphic Novels & Comics, 1(1), 51-62.
Dittmer, J. (2005). Captain America’s empire: Reflections on identity, popular culture, and post-9/11 geopolitics. Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 95(3), 626-643.
Dorfman, A., Mattelart, A. (1975). How to read Donald Duck: Imperialist ideology in the Disney comic. Amsterdam: International general.
Dubose, M. S. (2007). Holding Out for a Hero: Reaganism, Comic Book Vigilantes, and Captain America. The Journal of Popular Culture, 40(6), 915-935.
Dyson, A. H. (1997). Writing superheroes: Contemporary childhood, popular culture, and classroom literacy. New York: Teachers College Press.
Edwardson, Ryan. (2003). The many lives of Captain Canuck: Nationalism, culture, and the creation of a Canadian comic book superhero. Journal of Popular Culture, 37(2), 184-201.
Eisner, W. (1996). Graphic storytelling. Tamarack, FL.: Poorhouse Press.
Fuentez, T., & White, S.E. (1997). Analysis of black images in comic strips, 1915-1995. Newspaper Research Journal, 18(½), 72-85.
Gerstein, E.D., & Peterson, B.E. (2005). Fighting and flying: Archival analysis of threat, authoritarianism, and the North American comic book. Political Psychology, 26(6), 887-904.
Gibbons, J., Taylor, C., & Phillips, J. (2005). Minorities as marginalized heroes and prominent villains in the mass media: Music, news, sports, television, and movies. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company Publishers.
Hall, K. J., & Lucal, B. (1999). Tapping into Parallel Universes: Using Superhero Comic Books in Sociology Courses. Teaching Sociology, 27(1), 60-66.
Hansen, B. (2004). Medical history for the masses: How American comic books celebrated heroes of medicine in the 1940s. Bulletin of the History of Medicine, 78(1), 148-191.
Hill, J. H. (1998). Language, race, and white public space. American Anthropologist, 100(3), 680–689.
Horn, M. (1983). The world encyclopedia of comics (6th ed.). New York, NY: Chelsea House Publishing.
Hughes, J. (2006). “Who Watches the Watchmen?”: Ideology and “Real World” Superheroes. The Journal of Popular Culture, 39(4), 546–557.
Jennings, J. & Duffy, D. (2010). Black Comix: African American Independent Comics, Art and Culture. Brooklyn: Mark Batty.
Kaplan, A. (2006). Masters of the comic book universe revealed. Chicago, IL: Chicago Review Press.
Kelley, M. (2009). The golden age of comic books: Representations of American culture from the great depression to the cold war. Retrieved from http://epublications.marquette.edu/dittm an/1/
Kinder, M. (1999). Kids’ media culture. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press.
Lang, J and Trimble, P. (1998). Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow? An Examination of the American Monomyth and the Comic Book Superhero, The Journal of Popular Culture, 22(3), 157–173.
Lendrum, R. (2004). Queering Super-Manhood: The Gay Superhero in Contemporary Mainstream Comic Books, Journal for the Arts, Sciences, and Technology 2(2), 287-303.
Lendrum, R. (2005). The super black macho, one baaad mutha: Black superhero masculinity in the 1970s mainstream comic books. Extrapolation, 46(3), 360-372.
Lopes, P. (2006). Culture and Stigma: Popular Culture and the Case of Comic Books. Sociological Forum, 21(3), 387-414. doi:10.1007/s11206-006-9022-6
McAllister,M., Gordon,I. & Mark Jancovich. (2006). BLOCKBUSTER Meets Superhero Comic, or ART HOUSE Meets Graphic Novel? The Contradictory Relationship between Film and Comic Art. Journal of Popular Film & Television, 34(3), 108-114.
Mazzenga, M. (2004). The home front’s cartoony face: World War two through Orphan Annie’s eyes. Prospects, 28, 429-463.
McCloud, S. (2000). Reinventing comics: How imagination and technology are revolutionizing an art form. New York: Perennial.
McLoughlin, T.O. (1989). Reading Zimbabwean comic strips. Research in African Literatures, 20(2), 217-241.
Means-Coleman, R. (2002). Say it loud!: African-American audiences, media, and identity. New York, NY: Routledge.
Mondello, S. (1976). Spider-Man: Superhero in the Liberal Tradition. The Journal of Popular Culture, X(1), 232-238.
Moore, J. T. (2003). The Education of Green Lantern: Culture and Ideology. The Journal of American Culture, 26(2), 263-278.
Nel, P. (2008). Tales for little rebels: A collection of radical children’s literature. New York, NY: New York University Press.
Nelson, A. (2005). Swing Papa and Barry Jordan: Comic strips and black newspapers in postwar Toledo. OAH Proceedings. Paper presented at Ohio Academy of History Annual Meeting, Muskingum College, New Concord, 7-8 April (pp. 61-74). New Concord, OH.
Newell, S. (2002). Readings in African popular fiction international. Bloomington, ID: Indiana University Press.
Padva, G. (2005). Dreamboys, meatmen and werewolves: Visualizing erotic identities in all-male comic strips. Sexualities, 8(5), 587-599.
Palmer-Mehta, V. and Hay, K. (2005). A Superhero for Gays?: Gay Masculinity and Green Lantern. The Journal of American Culture, 28(4), 390–404.
Pearson, R. E., & Uric, W. (Eds.). (1992). The many lives of the Batman. New York: Routledge.
Peterson, B. E., & Gerstein, E. D. (2005). Fighting and Flying: Archival Analysis of Threat, Authoritarianism, and the North American Comic Book. Political Psychology, 26(6), 887-904.
Pewewardy, C. (2002). From subhuman to superhuman: Images of first nations peoples in comic books. Studies in Media & Information Literacy, 2(2), 1-9.
Rivera, L. (2007). Appropriate(d) Cyborgs: Diasporic Identities in Dwayne McDuffie’s Deathlok Comic Book Series. MELUS, 32(3), 103-127.
Ryan, J. D. (2006). Black Female Authorship and the African American Graphic Novel: Historical Responsibility in Icon: A Hero’s Welcome. MFS Modern Fiction Studies, 52(4), 918-946.
Reynolds, M. (2003). Comic strip artists in American newspapers, 1945-1980. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company Publishers.
Richard, W. (2005). Cognitive technology: Essays on the transformation of thought and society. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company Publishers.
Roberts, G. (2004). Understanding the sequential art of comic strips and comic books and their descendants in the early years of the new millennium. The Journal of American Culture, 27(2), 210-217.
Rosinsky, N. (2010). Graphic content the culture of comic books. Mankato, MN: Coughlan Publishing.
Royal, D. (2007). Editor’s introduction: Coloring america: Multi-ethnic engagements with graphic narrative. The Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States, 32(3), 7-22.
Schwartz, A., & Rubinstein-Ãvila, E. (2006). Understanding the Manga Hype: Uncovering the Multimodality of Comic-Book Literacies. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 50(1), 40-49.
Schwarz, G. E. (2002). Graphic Novels for Multiple Literacies. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 46(3), 262–266.
Scott, A. B. (2006). Superpower vs Supernatural: Black Superheroes and the Quest for a Mutant Reality. Journal of Visual Culture, 5(3), 295 -314.
Shannon, E. (1995). “That we may mis-unda-stend each udda”: The rhetoric of krazy kat. The Journal of Popular Culture, 29 (2), 209-222.
Singer, M. (2002). “Black skins” and white masks: Comic books and the secret of race. African American Review, 36(1), 107-120.
Skidmore, J., & Skidmore, M.J. (1983). More than mere fantasy: Political themes in contemporary comic books. The Journal of Popular Culture, 17(1), 83-92.
Smoodin, E. (1992). Cartoon and comic classicism: High-art histories of lowbrow culture. Oxford Journal, 4(1), 129-140.
Snyder, E.E. (1997). Teaching the sociology of sport: Using a comic strip in the classroom. Teaching Sociology, 25(3), 239-243.
Steele, V. (1998). Tom feelings: A Black arts movement. African American Review, 32(1), 119-224.
Stevens, J. D. (1976). Reflections in a dark mirror: Comic strips in Black newspapers. The Journal of Popular Culture, X(1), 239–244.
Taylor, A. (2007). “He’s Gotta Be Strong, and He’s Gotta Be Fast, and He’s Gotta Be Larger Than Life”: Investigating the Engendered Superhero Body. The Journal of Popular Culture, 40(2), 344-360.
Teshjian, D. (1993). Art, world war II, and the home front. Oxford Journals, 8(4). 715-727.
Thorndike, R. L. (1941). Words and the Comics. The Journal of Experimental Educational, 110–113.
Trushell, J. M. (2004). American Dreams of Mutants: The X-Men-”Pulp” Fiction, Science Fiction, and Superheroes. The Journal of Popular Culture, 38(1), 149-168.
Wanzo, R. (2009). Wearing Hero-Face: Black Citizens and Melancholic Patriotism in
Truth: Red, White, and Black. The Journal of Popular Culture, 42(2), 339-362.
Weiner, R. (2009) Racial issues in Captain America and the struggle of the superhero: Critical essays. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company Publishers.
Weltzien, F. (2005). Masque-ulinities: Changing Dress as a Display of Masculinity in the Superhero Genre.
Fashion Theory: The Journal of Dress, Body & Culture, 9(2), 229-250.
Widzer, M. E. (1977). The Comic-Book Superhero: A study of the Family Romance Fantasy. Psychoanalytic Study of the Child, 32, 565–603.
Wright, B. W. (2001). Comic book nation: The transformation of youth culture in America. Baltimore, MD. JHU Press.
Woll, A.L. (1976). The comic book in a socialist society: Allende’s chile, 1970–1973. The Journal of Popular Culture, 9(4), 1039-1045.
Zolkover, A. (2008). “Corporealizing fairy tales: The body, the bawdy, and the carnivalesque in the comic book fables.” Marvels & Tales, 22(1), 38-51.