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2013 Master's Level Graduate Research Conference

Session I - Session II - Session III

Captain America Comics as Historically Grounded Cultural Criticism

After Joe Simon and Jack Kirby create him in 1941, Captain America serves the writers and editors of Timely, then Atlas, and finally Marvel Comics as a means to comment upon and critique American culture. In the 1950s, Atlas Comics, wrapped up in the frenzy of McCarthyism and the Red Scare, rebrand Captain America the “Commie Smasher” for a short, and ultimately ret-conned (negated after the fact), run. Following the character’s second resurgence in the 1960s, Marvel tapped into the spirit of the Civil Rights Movement, wroting the character to be more liberal, discussing issues of race and examining what it meant to be an American. Finally, in the past decade, Ed Brubaker writes Captain America stories that reflect back on the cultural memory of the Cold War, resurrecting Bucky as a Soviet-brainwashed assassin and introducing a series of ex-KGB characters.

Presenter: Richard D. Deverell (The College at Brockport) -- rdeve1@u.brockport.edu
Topic: History, English, & Film Studies
Location: 101 Edwards
Time: 9:15 am (Session I)