Silva, Ricardo. "Superheroes of Youth. Racial Depictions in American Comic Books". International Conference Youth in/and Literature & Society: Lisbon, 9.–11. Juli, 2014.
Added by: joachim (2014-08-02 12:48)
|Resource type: Conference Paper
BibTeX citation key: Silva2014
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Keywords: "Captain America", "Green Lantern", Children’s and young adults’ comics, Ethnicity, Stereotypes, Superhero, USA
Publisher: Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, New University of Lisbon (Lisbon)
Collection: International Conference Youth in/and Literature & Society
|Attachments||URLs https://www.academ ... erican_Comic_Books|
It is widely argued that through literature one might catch a glimpse of society’s concerns. Some believe that literature might also be a catalyst for change in society. Likewise, comic books are both an element of culture and a literary medium which, throughout history, has been divided between the purposes of entertainment and education. Comics are an easy and visually appealing form through which ideas might be conveyed to society. As Parker Royal notes, “This power [...] becomes all the more evident when placed within the context of race and ethnicity [, as] comics are a heavily coded medium that rely on stereotyping”.
The purpose of this paper is twofold: First, it will aim to demonstrate that racial and cultural identities represented in superhero comics since the 1940s have been affected by both wartime propaganda and segregation policies; Secondly, it will elaborate on the racial and cultural stereotypes represented in comic books, as well as their influence on the American youth. In order to do this, this paper will start by analysing the early 1940s superhero’s African American sidekick; then, it will elaborate on the origins and purpose of Marvel Comics’ Captain America, its relationship with war propaganda, and the Tuskegee experiments; and lastly, it will focus on the issues of invisibility and diversity of racial identities in DC Comic’s Green Lantern.
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