CfP: Canon Fodder

1st Annual CXC Academic Symposium
Cartoon Crossroads Columbus
October 13-16, 2016
Stichtag: 30.06.2016

Starting in October 2016, the annual Cartoon Crossroads Columbus festival will include an academic symposium, hosted this year at the Ohio State University campus in partnership with the Sol-Con: the Brown + Black Comics Expo, the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, the Columbus College of Arts & Design, and the Comics Studies Society.

Our theme for this inaugural year is “Canon Fodder,” seeking to test and remix the still-damp concrete of comics histories and canons before they set. The goal for the symposium is to launch an extended conversation among participants that will continue into the CXC weekend and beyond.

Some of the questions we hope to begin answering at the symposium are:

  • What is missing from the dominant narratives of comics history?
  • What unites and what challenges the emerging canon of comics scholarship? What unites and what challenges the emerging canon of comics taught in the classroom?
  • What isn’t being written about that should be, and why? What isn’t being taught that should be, and why?
  • What happens to our sense of the field when we focus on X or decenter Y?
  • What are the institutions (industry, fandom, scholarly) that define and defend canons in comics?
  • Are there problems inherent with applying the concept of canonicity to comics (or comics studies)?
  • How can academic comics scholars and historians contribute to a field whose foundations were laid by cartoonists and independent scholars without f&*%ing it all up?

Selected papers from the symposium will be invited to contribute to a roundtable to be published in Inks: The Journal of the Comics Studies Society.

CXC 2016 will be October 13-16. More information about the Cartoon Crossroads Columbus festival can be found at

Please send 250-500 word abstracts + a 2-page CV (or 250 word biographical statement) to Jared Gardner at by June 30, 2016.

More information about sponsoring institutions can be found at:

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