Fourteenth Annual Comic Arts Conference

July 20 -23, 2006

Convention Center
San Diego, California

1. Myths for the Modern Age
Thursday July 20                   10:30-11:30                Room 7B

In the tradition of Philip José Farmer’s famous hoax biography Tarzan Alive, contributors to Myths for the Modern Age: Philip Jose Farmer's Wold Newton Universe (MonkeyBrain Books) present their parascholarship with a straight face, treating comic book as the reports of the adventures of real-life people.

Out of Time

Win Eckert, “Foreword” Tarzan Alive.

The Daughters of Greystoke.

Chuck Loridans, Myths for the Modern Age

Kiss of the Vampire.

John Small, Myths for the Modern Age

What’s in a Name?

Brad Mengel, Myths for the Modern Age

Meta-Analysis of Principles of Wold-Newtonry in Myths for the Modern Age

Peter Coogan, Fontbonne University


2. The Great Leap: Adapting Comics Into Film

Thursday July 20                   11:30-1:00                  Room 7B

Should governments be afraid of their people: V for Vendetta and the War on Terror

Kate McClancy, Duke University

The Crisis of Confidence in Comics Adaptations: Why the People Who Make Comic Books and the People Who Make Movies Don't Believe In The Superhero Myth.

Richard A. Becker, CSU Northridge

Ghost Worlds and American Splendors: Comics & Film in the Age of New Media."

Jared Gardner, Ohio State University

Cover to Cover: Translation vs. Adaptation in Sin City and Hellboy.

Ariel Schudson, UCLA


3. Comics: When Pictures and Words Collide?

Thursday July 20                   1:00-2:30                    Room 7B

Explore three unique and valuable perspectives on comics, from concept to creation to publication. Famed author RC Harvey (The Art of the Comic Book; The Genius of Winsor McCay) provides insights into the dynamic process of combining art and text. Legendary artist Rick Geary (Graphic Classics; Victorian Murders) describes how he transforms novels and biographies into comics literature. And renowned graphic designer Chip Kidd (Book One; Batman Collected) reveals his book selection process as editor of Pantheon’s graphic novel line. Noted writer Michael Dooley (The Education of a Comics Artist) moderates this profusely illustrated session.


4. Superman and the Heroic Ideal

Friday July 21                        10:30-12:00                Room 7B

Superman, Counter-Insurgency, and the Rule of Law.

Peter B. Lloyd, Whole Being Books

Superman vs. the Deconstructer: the Postmodern Challenge to the Ultimate Super-Hero.

Barry Morris, Pace University

Ascending the Great Chain of Being: The collision of Old World ideology and New World identity in Superhero comics.

Clare Pitkethly, La Trobe University

First Action Hero: Captain John Smith, Superman, and the Recovery of the Heroic Ideal in the Modern World.

Alex Boney, Ohio State University



5. Comics as Postmodern Narrative

Friday July 21                        12:00-1:15                  Room 7B

Singing the Body Imaginative: The Elemental Flesh in Alan Moore’s Promethea.

Jennifer K. Stuller,

Invisible Spectacles, Invisible Limits: Grant Morrison, Situationist Theory & Real Unrealities.

Frank Verano, Temple University

Four Colour Theories: Comics as Textual Postmodernity.

            Jason Bainbridge, University of Tasmania


6. Visual Language

Friday July 21                        1:15-2:30                    Room 7B

The Secret of Sequence, or The Grammar of Comics

Neil Cohn, Tufts University

Visual Language and Universal Grammar.

Zon Petilla, CSU Fresno

The Western Vocabulary of Visual Language.

Hal Shipman, Northwestern Univerisyt


7. Toon Town

Saturday July 22                    10:30-11:30                Room 7B

Kent Worcester (Marymount Manhattan College) presents an illustrated lecture on New York City and comic books, focusing on a handful of iconic characters whose carefully staged performances make skillful use of NYC's streets, architecture, and larger-than-life personalities.  While it is widely recognized that NYC has played a unique role in the development of the comic book, as an industry, as a creative medium, and as a resource for artists and writers, it is also worth noting that the familiar conventions of comic book page composition offer a hidden visual echo of the grid system of Manhattan. Native New Yorker Danny Fingeroth (New York University, The New School) responds to and dialogues with Worcester.


8. The Supervillain, From Antagonist to Protagonist: Celebrating the Supervillain in Today’s Comics

Saturday July 22                    11:30-1:00                  Room 7B

Contributors to The Supervillain Book: The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Comic-Book and Hollywood Masterminds, Megalomaniacs, and Menaces (Visible Ink Press, 2006), Gina Misiroglu (Visible Ink Press), Peter Coogan (Superhero: The Secret Origin of a Genre), Michael Eury (Back Issue), Peter Sanderson (Comics in Context), and Alex Boney (Ohio State University) discuss the popularity of the villain in the popular culture, the evolution of the villain in comics, characters who have alternately been hero and villains, and the modern supervillain (including the villain-centric trend in comic-book publishing today with books like Villains United). These topics are framed within an overarching presentation of how the villain is reflected in the popular culture. Room 7B


9. Comics as Philosophy

Saturday July 22                    1:00-2:00                    Room 7B

Jeff McLaughlin (Thompson Rivers University) editor of Comics as Philosophy (University Press of Mississippi, 2005) and contributor Bob Harvey (The Art of the Comic Book; The Genius of Winsor McCay) present an overview of their inventive essay anthology that uses comics to explore the tenets of philosophy via a wide variety of genres, from mainstream superhero comics, to graphic novels of social realism, to European adventure classics, including existentialism in Daniel Clowes's graphic novel Ghost World, ecocriticism in Paul Chadwick's long-running Concrete series, political philosophies in Hergé's perennially popular The Adventures of Tintin and how superhero comics have responded to 9/11 and reflect the anxieties of the contemporary world. Room 7B


10. Poster Session

Saturday July 22                    2:00-3:00                    Room 7B

Social Commentary in the Intertwining of Verbal and Visual Meaning in A Tale of One Bad Rat

Dana Anderson, Binghamton University

Framed!  The Genesis of Gallery Comics.

Christian Hill, CSU Fullerton

The Evolution of Darwin in Popular Culture: Charles Darwin, Evolution, and Comics.

Matt Poslusny, Widener University

Transformation Propagation or, ‘Seduction of the Jaded’.

Darick Chamberlin,

Picturing Pain: Toward a Visual Language of Torture in V for Vendetta and The Invisibles.

Patrick Jagoda , Duke University

The Discovery of the English (Comic) Book: Formal and Cultural Hybridity in Hicksville.

         Aaron Kashtan, Dartmouth University

The Comic Book Auteurs: How Scholarship Scrutinizes and Legitimizes Comics’ Best.

         Matthew Smith, Wittenberg University

Out of the Utility Closet: Queer Studies and Comic Books.

         Eric Schlegel, Dade County Public Schools

Kirby as a Genre.

         John Walsh, Indiana University


11. Comics in the Classroom

Sunday July 23                       10:30-11:30                Room 7B

College Students as Comics Scholars: A Collaborative Project in Composition Pedagogy and Collection Development at The George Washington University.

Phillip Troutman, George Washington University

Cathy Eisenhower, George Washington University

The Graphic Novel in the ‘Culture of Information’ Classroom

Kimberly Knight, UC Santa Barbara

Elisabeth Swanstrom, UC Santa Barbara


12. Ever-Ending Battle Symposium

Sunday July 23                       11:30-1:00                  Room 7B

Death and the Superhero: The Silver Age and Beyond

         Jose Alaniz, University of Washington

The Night Gwen Stacy Died: The End of Innocence and the Birth of the Bronze Age

Dr. Arnold T. Blumberg, Geppi's Entertainment Museum

Sing Muse, of the Immortal Hero: Using Epic to Understand Comic Books

William Duffy SUNY Buffalo

The Disease Resumes Its March to Darkness: The Death of Captain Marvel and the Metastasis of Empire

Wilbur Farley SUNY Stony Brook

The Universe She Died In: The Death and Lives of Gwen Stacy.

Abraham Kawa, University of the Aegean

Deconstructing Crisis on Infinite Earths: Grant Morrison’s Animal Man, JLA: Earth 2, and Flex Mentallo

Michael Niederhausen, (Cuyahoga Community College


13. The Other Superhero:

Sunday July 23                       1:00-2:30                    Room 7B

The Superhero as Messiah.

Chris Carpenter, Christ the King parish

Place and Displacement: Locating the Woman Warrior in a (Post)Modern World

Kristy Boney, Ohio State University

Negotiating Life Spaces: Will Marriage Change Storm?

         Anita McDaniel, University of North Carolina, Wilmington