Desegregating Comics: Debating Blackness in the Golden Age of American Comics
Some comics fans view the industry's Golden Age (1930s-1950s) as a challenging time when it comes to representations of race, an era when the few black characters appeared as brutal savages, devious witch doctors, or unintelligible minstrels. Desegregating Comics assembles a team of leading scholars to explore how debates about the representation of blackness shaped both the production and reception of Golden Age comics. Some essays showcase rare titles like Negro Romance and consider the formal innovations introduced by black comics creators like Matt Baker and Alvin Hollingsworth, while others examine the treatment of race in the work of such canonical cartoonists as George Herriman and Will Eisner. Golden Age comics artists, writers, editors, distributors, and readers engaged in heated negotiations over how blackness should be portrayed, and the outcomes of those debates continue to shape popular culture today.