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ComFor-panel at the 21st Comic-Salon 2024: “Das Stigma des ‘Anderen'”

Comic-Salon Erlangen 2024As in many previous years, the International Comic-Salon Erlangen 2024 (May 30-June 2) will once again feature a series of lectures by the Society for Comic Studies (ComFor), which Clemens Heydenreich has once again put together and will chair. In 2024, the nine lectures will be entitled “Das Stigma des ‘Anderen’: Klischees und Zuschreibungen im Comic” (The Stigma of the ‘Other’: Clichés and Attributions in comics).


Friday, May 31, 2024
Barbara M. Eggert (Linz): „Completely dotty“? Zur visuellen Umsetzung von nicht-normativen psychischen Zuständen in Elisa Macellaris Kusama (2020)

Myriam Macé (Bremen): „Ça devient rare comme race“ – Eine autobiographische Spurensuche in Lebensborn (2024) von Isabelle Maroger

Iris Haist (Plauen): “Alien in New York”. Die Darstellung des “Anderen” in Nnedi Okorafors LaGuardia

Saturday, June 1, 2024
Hanspeter Reiter (Landsberg/Lech): Gendern in Comics – wie kann das (an)gehen?

Jörn Ahrens (Gießen): Othering und Kolonialismus: Atar Gull und die Rache der Sklaven

Dietrich Grünewald (Reiskirchen): Das Judenbild im Comic

Sunday, June 2, 2024
Thomas Sähn (Paris): (De)Konstruktion des Andersseins als inhärenter Bestandteil erzählerischer Bildsprache

Martin Frenzel (Darmstadt): Über MAUS hinaus. Judenhass, Shoah und Israel im Comic. Von Krigstein über Kichka bis Joann Sfar

Katharina Serles (Wien): „Kauf dir mal ein Buch. Loser!“ Klasse, Körper und Kanon in Eva Müllers Scheiblettenkind (2023)

Zur Veranstaltungsseite für alle Abstracts (weiter auf “Filter” –> “Vorträge/Präsentationen”)

Published: “Comics Strike Back! Digital Forms, Digital Practices, Digital Audiences”

Studies in ComicsComFor member Giorgio Busi Rizzi, together with his co-editors Lorenzo Di Paola and Nicoletta Mandolini, has just published a special issue of the journal Studies in Comics (14/2023) focusing on “Comics Strike Back! Digital Forms, Digital Practices, Digital Audiences”.

The collection of current contributions is based on a conference of the same name which was held from July 12-14, 2022 at the University of Ghent and online. In addition to an introduction by the editors and a contribution by Rizzi and Di Paola (“A cyberpunk symphony of dystopian nightmares: Towards an archaeology of early digital comics”) the nine articles include essays by ComFor members Lukas R.A. Wilde (“Webcomics as mediation”) and Vanessa Ossa (together with Nicolle Lamerichs: “Fandom, algorithm, prompting: Reconsidering webcomics”).

Continue to the publication

Call for Nominations: Martin Schüwer Publication Prize 2024

Call for Nominations:

Martin Schüwer Publication Prize for Excellence in Comics Studies

Annual award for the best article by an early-career scholar, organized by the German Society for Comics Studies (ComFor) and the Committee for Comics Studies at the German Society for Media Studies (GfM)

The German Society for Comics Studies (ComFor) and the Committee for Comics Studies at the German Society for Media Studies (GfM) are announcing for the sixth time in 2024 the Martin Schüwer Publication Prize for Excellence in Comics Studies. The prize has been awarded annually since 2019. It supports scholars who, regardless of their actual age, do not yet hold a permanent academic position. By honoring outstanding publications in the field of interdisciplinary comics research, the award aims to create more visibility for comics-related research, promoting and communicating its importance to a wider public.

The prize is named after the late Martin Schüwer, a scholar of English Literature and Culture who specialized in comics studies and who, very unfortunately, died at a far too early age in 2013. His dissertation Wie Comics erzählen (2008), published 16 years ago, has opened up new ground for narratological comics research and has become a standard work in German-language comics studies. With this and his other works on comics as well as on the didactics of English literature, Martin Schüwer set valuable standards regarding the excellence, accessibility and range that publications in our fields can achieve. Both as a comics researcher and as a person, Schüwer had a distinct way of talking to people, characterized by his open-mindedness and a genuine interest in others. Talking to and with others, he aimed to advance comics studies. We dedicate the award to him and this very goal.

Submissions and Nominations:

Accepted for nomination are published articles of chapter length. They may have appeared in anthologies or journals, as chapters, or within longer monographs, but also as essays and other text forms of similar length. The submitted and nominated texts may have been written by one or more authors. All authors must not hold a permanent academic position at the time of nomination.

Contributions nominated for the Martin Schüwer Prize 2024 must be published in German or English between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2023. Texts yet in print or only accepted for publication cannot be considered. Repeat submissions are not possible. Also excluded are complete monographs and unpublished qualifying publications. The editorship of anthologies or journal issues is not eligible for nomination, but individual contributions in these collections are.

Nominations are to include the recommended text as well as a short substantiation (300-500 words). Self-nominations are possible and welcome, the jury would also particularly like to call for third-party nominations of impressive texts. Deadline for all submissions is April 30, 2024. Please send your nominations as one complete PDF to

Prize and Award Ceremony:

The official announcement of the award winner will take place during the annual conference of the German Society for Media Studies (September 25.–28., 2024; Johannes Gutenberg-University, Mainz ). The award ceremony with an invited lecture by the award winner will take place at the annual conference of the German Society for Comic Studies (October 23.–25., 2024; University of Groningen, Netherlands). The laureate will also receive the prize money of 1000 €, will not have to pay the membership fee of the German Society for Media Studies (GfM) for one year and will become an honorary member of ComFor for life.

Call for Nominations as Pdf

Monitor 76: New Publications on Comic Books

Monitor is an irregularly published overview of publications from the previous six months that may be of relevance to comics studies scholars. The introductory texts are the respective publishers’. Do you have suggestions or information on new releases that have been overlooked and should be introduced on our website? Please let us know via email:
See previous Monitor posts.

The illustration shows the book cover.Growing Up Graphic: The Comics of Children in Crisis

Alison Halsall
The Ohio State University Press
September 2023
Publisher’s website

In Growing Up Graphic, Alison Halsall considers graphic texts for young readers to interrogate how they help children develop new ideas about social justice and become potential agents of change. With a focus on comics that depict difficult experiences affecting young people, Halsall explores the complexities of queer graphic memoirs, narratives of belonging, depictions of illness and disability, and explorations of Indigenous experiences. She discusses, among others, Child Soldier by Jessica Dee Humphreys and Michel Chikwanine, War Brothers by Sharon E. McKay, Baddawi by Leila Abdelrazaq, Matt Huynh’s interactive adaptation of Nam Le’s The Boat, and David Alexander Robertson’s 7 Generations. These examples contest images of childhood victimization, passivity, and helplessness, instead presenting young people as social actors who attempt to make sense of the challenges that affect them. In considering comics for children and about children, Growing Up Graphic centers a previously underexplored vein of graphic narratives and argues that these texts offer important insights into the interests and capabilities of children as readers.


The illustration shows the book cover.Super-Girls of the Future: Girlhood and Agency in Contemporary Superhero Comics

Routledge Studies in Gender, Sexuality, and Comics

Charlotte J. Fabricius
October 2023
Publisher’s website

Super-Girls of the Future: Girlhood and Agency in Contemporary Superhero Comics investigates girl superheroes published by DC and Marvel Comics in the first two decades of the twenty-first century, asking who the new-and-improved super-girls are and what potentials they hold for imagining girls as agents of change, in the genre as well as its socio-cultural context.
As super-girls have grown increasingly numerous and diverse since the turn of the millennium, they provide an opportunity for reconsidering representations of gender and power in the superhero genre. This book offers the term agentic embodiment as an analytical tool for critiquing the body politics of superhero comics, particularly concerning youth, femininity, whiteness, and violence. Grounded in comics studies and informed by feminist cultural studies, the book contributes a critical and hopeful perspective on the diversification of a genre often written off as irredeemably conservative and patriarchal.


The illustration shows the book cover.Ben Katchor

Benjamin Fraser
University Press of Mississippi
October 2023
Publisher’s website

The recipient of a 2000 MacArthur fellowship, Ben Katchor (b. 1951) is a beloved comics artist with a career spanning four decades. Published in indie weeklies across the United States, his comics are known for evoking the sensorium of the modern metropolis. As part of the Biographix series edited by Frederick Luis Aldama, Ben Katchor offers scholars and fans a thorough overview of the artist’s career from 1988 to 2020.


The illustration shows the book cover.The Political Imagination in Spanish Graphic Narrative

Routledge Advances in Comics Studies

Xavier Dapena, Joanne Britland (eds.)
November 2023
Publisher’s website

In a spirit of community and collective action, this volume offers insights into the complexity of the political imagination and its cultural scope within Spanish graphic narrative through the lens of global political and social movements.
Developed during the critical years of the COVID-19 pandemic and global lockdown, the volume and its chapters reflect the interdisciplinary nature of the comic. They employ a cultural studies approach with different theoretical frameworks ranging from debates within comics studies, film and media theory, postcolonialism, feminism, economics, multimodality, aging, aesthetics, memory studies, food studies, and sound studies, among others.


The illustration shows the book cover.Comics, Culture, and Religion: Faith Imagined

Kees de Groot (ed.)
November 2023
Publisher’s website

This open access book offers an overview of the relations between comics and religion from the perspective of cultural sociology. How do comics function in religions and how does religion appear in comics? And how do graphic narratives inform us about contemporary society and the changing role of religion?
Contributing scholars use international examples to explore the diversity of religions, spirituality, and dispersed notions of the sacred, including Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Zoroastrianism, Indian, and Japanese religions. In addition, the rituals, ethics, and worldviews that surface in the comics milieu are discussed.


The illustration shows the book cover.The Patterns of Comics: Visual Languages of Comics from Asia, Europe, and North America

Neil Cohn
December 2023
Publisher’s website

Comics are a global phenomenon, and yet it’s easy to distinguish the visual styles of comics from Asia, Europe, or the United States. But, do the structures of these visual narratives differ in more subtle ways? Might these comics actually be drawn in different visual languages that vary in their structures across cultures? To address these questions, The Patterns of Comics seeks evidence through a sustained analysis of an annotated corpus of over 36,000 panels from more than 350 comics from Asia, Europe, and the United States. This data-driven approach reveals the cross-cultural variation in symbology, layout, and storytelling between various visual languages, and shows how comics have changed across 80 years.