Evan Narcisse, Stephanie Burt, Douglas Wolk, and moderator Danny Fingeroth discuss comic heroes and their connection to American society. Join the YouTube livestream: https://youtu.be/zNrAJ1wxjaI

The History of Marvel Universe. An Interplay between Comics and Social Movements

Panel discussion via YouTube livestream / No registration necessary


This event will take place via YouTube livestream: https://youtu.be/zNrAJ1wxjaI

How are current social movements like Black Lives Matter and the fight for transgender and disability rights connected to comics? Loyal fans know this interplay well, but to the broader public, the tight connection may come as a surprise. Literary critic and English professor Stephanie Burt, journalist and Black Panther comic writer Evan Narcisse, and author, journalist and literary critic Douglas Wolk will discuss how comics and their heroes have evolved alongside American society throughout history. This history cannot go without acknowledgment of Stan Lee, the creator and controversial figure behind Marvel Universe. Moderating the event will be Danny Fingeroth, who recently published a biography of Lee’s life.



About the panelists:


Stephanie Burt is Professor of English at Harvard. Her most recent books include After Callimachus (Princeton, 2020: poems and translations) and Don't Read Poetry: A Book About How to Read Poems (Basic, 2019). She has written about comics, superheroes, science fiction, and LGBTQ+ representation for the New Yorker, the London Review of Books, American Literary History, tComicsXF, The Times Literary Supplement, Rain Taxi, the New York Times Book Review, and other venues in the US, UK, New Zealand, and Australia.



Danny Fingeroth is a popular-culture critic and historian. His most recent book is A Marvelous Life: The Amazing Story of Stan Lee (St. Martin’s Press/Macmillan, 2019), the definitive biography of the controversial, pioneering Lee, co-creator of Marvel’s most popular characters. A Marvelous Life was the first major biography of Lee published after his 2018 death. Fingeroth, a former executive editor and writer at Marvel Comics, knew Lee and worked closely with him. In researching the book, Fingeroth conducted some of the last in-depth interviews done with Lee.

Danny is a consultant to Will Eisner Studios, and is the Chair of Will Eisner Week, the annual celebration of the visionary cartoonist’s career and legacy.

Fingeroth is also the author of books including Superman on the Couch: What Superheroes Really Tell Us About Ourselves and Our Society; Disguised as Clark Kent: Jews Comics and the Creation of the Superhero; and The Rough Guide to Graphic Novels. Danny has spoken and taught at venues including Columbia University, the Smithsonian Institution, The Mimaster Art Institute in Milan, and the San Diego Comic Con. He is currently at work on books about iconic 20th Century figures Bob Dylan and Jack Ruby.



Evan Narcisse is a writer and consultant who works in video games, comic books, and TV, often focusing on the intersection of blackness and pop culture. He was a journalist and critic for many years, having previously written for The Atlantic, Time Magazine, Kotaku, io9, and The New York Times. He’s taught a course on video game journalism at New York University and appeared as an expert guest on CNN and NPR. He's the author of the Rise of the Black Panther graphic novel for Marvel Comics and served as a narrative design consultant on Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales video game. A native New Yorker, he now lives in Austin, Texas.



Douglas Wolk (Comics writer, critic, journalist and teacher) is the author of the Eisner Award-winning Reading Comics and the host of the podcast “The Voice of Latveria.” A National Arts Journalism Program Fellow, Wolk has written about comic books, graphic novels, pop music and technology for the New York Times, Rolling Stone, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Believer, Slate, and Pitchfork. He lives in Portland, Oregon.


Please note: Following the talk, you may pose questions to our panelists online. If you prefer to do so even before the event, you can write an e-mail to event@amerikahaus.de – just include “Question: History of Marvel Universe” in the subject line.


Organizer: Stiftung Bayerisches Amerikahaus


Contact: Joanna King, Nina Müller


(Photo: 2013 London MCM Expo at the ExCeL Exhibition Centre © Roger Murmann from Eppertshausen, Deutschland, Creative Commons CC BY 2.0, No changes made, via Wikimedia Commons)


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