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May. 31, 2018

Associate Professor Carol Tilley will participate in a panel discussion at the Chicago Alternative Comics Expo (CAKE) this weekend. A celebration of independent comics, CAKE features workshops, exhibitions, and panel discussions as well as comics for sale.

On June 2, Tilley will moderate a panel featuring legendary comic artists Nicole Hollander, Mimi Pond, and Jim Woodring. She looks forward to her conversation with the panelists, especially in light of the personal connection she has with the works of Hollander and Pond.

"From my adolescence forward, my life and politics have been immeasurably enriched by Nicole Hollander's brain as channeled through her alter-ego Sylvia, the chain-smoking comic strip denizen whose satiric observations urge us to be better," Tilley said. "I first encountered the works of the brilliant Mimi Pond in my adolescence too: among her time-capsule books is 1982's The Valley Girl's...

Jun. 7, 2017

Associate Professor Carol Tilley will be a keynote speaker for the NASIG 32nd Annual Conference, which will be held June 8-11 in Indianapolis. An independent association of librarians and academic publishing professionals, NASIG promotes communication, information, and continuing education about scholarly communications, serials, and electronic resources. Her talk, "The Secret Life of Comics: Socializing and Seriality," will provide an overview of the past, present, and future of comics in libraries, giving special emphasis to the role of readers and fandom in making comics a relevant and exciting medium to collect and preserve. 

Tilley also gave the keynote address for Monstrous Women in Comics: An Interdisciplinary Conference on Women in Comics and Graphic Novels, which took place May 25-27 at the University of North Texas. Her talk, "A...

Apr. 24, 2017

Comics as an educational tool, the role of women in comics storytelling, supervillains, and libraries' acceptance of comics are some of the topics Associate Professor Carol Tilley is discussing with audiences this month.

At the Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo (C2E2) on April 21-23, Tilley served on two panels, "The Evolution of Educational Comics" and "She Changed Comics." The first panel focused on the history of educational comics and the changes readers might expect for this genre, and it allowed Tilley to share some of her research for her recently published chapter, "Educating with Comics" (in The Secret History of Comics Studies, Routledge, 2017). The second panel examined how women—cartoonists, writers, editors, colorists, and more—have changed comics storytelling.

On Monday, April 24, Tilley, along with Betsy Gomez of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, Mara Thacker of the International and Area...

Oct. 25, 2016

Associate Professor Carol Tilley will present "Dear Sirs: I Believe You're Wasting Your Time" at the National Archives on October 27. The title of her talk, which is sponsored by the Center for Legislative Archives, refers to Senate hearings in the 1950s that investigated the link between comics and juvenile delinquency.

Tilley will address an audience composed of Archives staff and researchers, providing insights regarding comics collections relative to the Senate hearings. She will share findings from her research into the records of the Senate Judiciary Committee's Special Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency. She also will discuss her book project, Children, Comics, and Print Culture: A Cultural History of Comics Reading in the Mid-Twentieth Century.

"For my talk, I'll focus on the several hundred letters—many written by children and teens—that protest the 1954 Senate investigation of a link between comics and juvenile delinquency. I'll place these letters...

Oct. 18, 2016

Seventy-five years ago, Wonder Woman made her first appearance on the comic book scene, creating a strong female role model for generations to come. In the Variety magazine article, "Wonder Woman at 75: How the Superhero Icon Inspired a Generation of Feminists," Associate Professor Carol Tilley and other notables reflect on Wonder Woman’s message of empowerment and how the superhero continues to attract audiences. The movie "Wonder Woman" is scheduled to be released in June 2017.

"Wonder Woman is a character whose central message is one of love and redemption, and for me that points to her continued resonance and the concern about how she's portrayed in the upcoming film," said Tilley. "She was born into a world at war (the brink of US involvement in World War II) and our world continues to be dominated by violence of all kinds. Wonder Woman offers us hope for...

Sep. 20, 2016

Created in 1941, Wonder Woman has been a popular comics hero for decades. Associate Professor Carol Tilley will join fellow comics fans and scholars to celebrate the character’s seventy-fifth anniversary at the Wonder Woman Symposium on September 22-24 in Cleveland, Ohio. The event is hosted by Kent State University and the Cleveland Public Library.

Tilley will give an invited talk at the symposium, titled “By Sappho’s Stylus: Reading Wonder Woman with Wertham.”

Abstract: In his now-infamous 1954 book Seduction of the Innocent, psychiatrist Fredric Wertham opined that a child's exposure to Wonder Woman and other strong female characters might encourage non-normative understandings about gender and sexuality. Simply put, boys might grow to fear women and girls might grow to become lesbians. This talk will explore Wertham's arguments about Wonder Woman, drawing on some of the records he...

Aug. 31, 2016

Associate Professor Carol Tilley is the co-author of a chapter in The Routledge Companion to Comics, a newly published book edited by Frank Bramlett, Roy T. Cook, and Aaron Meskin. In the chapter, "Teaching and Learning with Comics," Tilley and Robert G. Weiner, a humanities librarian at Texas Tech University, examine how comics have been used as an instructional tool: 

This chapter emphasizes the use of comics in formal instructional settings, although some examples and discussions touch on elements of nontraditional and informal learning settings. It is beyond the scope of this chapter to provide a detailed review of the full history of conventionally published and educational comics used for teaching and learning, but we will highlight both historical and contemporary texts and practices with a focus on the United States. Furthermore, the emphasis will be on positive examples of practice rather than on critiques of comics as educational tools. Finally, we will touch on...