Tilley gives keynote, receives honor for comics work

Carol Tilley
Carol Tilley, Associate Professor

Associate Professor Carol Tilley shared her comics research at two conferences this summer: 6th International Comics Days, held at the University of São Paulo in Brazil, and the 2nd Annual Conference of the Comics Studies Society, held at Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada. At the latter event, she received an unexpected honor acknowledging her efforts to support comics scholars.

During International Comics Days, she presented the keynote, "The Comics Readers at the Center of Fredric Wertham's Lies." This talk focused on the voices and experiences of three of the young people used as evidence by Wertham in his 1954 anti-comics polemic, Seduction of the Innocent. The conference was held August 21-23 and sponsored by the Comics Observatory, a research group affiliated with the USP School of Communications and Arts.

poster advertising Tilley's talk in Brazil

"I was especially pleased to have been invited to speak at this conference because Brazil is one of the few non-English-speaking countries where Wertham’s ideas found purchase," Tilley said.

She also presented two papers at the Conference of the Comics Studies Society (CSS), which was held July 23-25, and participated in several meetings in her role as both immediate past president of CSS and a member of the organizing committee. At the conference's awards reception, Tilley was honored with the unexpected news that the CSS Travel Award has been renamed in her honor, recognizing her efforts to support and make visible the contributions of women and non-binary comics scholars.

Most recently, Tilley was featured in a podcast of the Pessimists Archive addressing the moral panic around comic books. The podcast is hosted by Jason Feifer, editor in chief of Entrepreneur Magazine and host of the podcast Problem Solvers.

At the iSchool, Tilley teaches courses in comics reader's advisory, media literacy, and youth services librarianship. Part of her scholarship focuses on the intersection of young people, comics, and libraries, particularly in the United States during the mid-twentieth century.

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