CONF Feb 13, 2019

Comics/Fandom (Köln, 28-29 Mar 19)

University of Cologne, Building 106, Room S01, Universitätsstraße 37, 50931 Cologne, Mar 28–29, 2019

Sven Stollfuß

Considering how crucially comic book marketing depends on loyal customers, especially fans, and to how great an extent the ever-expanding franchises surrounding Marvel’s or DC’s comic worlds rely on user participation and fandom, it seems striking that the connection between Comics Studies and Fan Studies has hardly been explored in any great detail so far.

Is this because Comics Studies focus on the text and Fan Studies on its recipient? At least in Germany, Comics Studies have strong roots in (Comparative) Literary Studies, Art History, or Philology while Fan Studies are either grounded in Media and Cultural studies or in Sociology (focusing on individual and mass consumption practices or group phenomena).

In the Workshop on Comics/Fandom, we want to address possible overlaps and frictions between Comics Studies and Fan Studies. The workshop is a collaboration between the Committee for Comics Studies (AG Comicforschung) and the Committee for the Studies of Fandom and Participatory Culture (AG Partizipations- und Fanforschung) at the German Society for Media Studies (GfM). It is organized by Sophie G. Einwächter (Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University Frankfurt/Philipps-University Marburg), Vanessa Ossa (University of Tübingen), Véronique Sina (University of Cologne), and Sven Stollfuß (University of Leipzig).


Day 1 | March 28, 2019

14.00h-14.15h: Welcome Address

14.15h-16.15h: PANEL 1: Platforms, Exchange, and Markets

Nicolle Lamerich (Utrecht):
Interdisciplinary Media Studies: Transmediality, Closure and Technology in Fandom and Comic Studies

Svenja Kaiser (Siegen):
Money Does Not Matter? An Auto-Ethnography on Fan Comics and Digital Platforms as Means of Commercial Exchange

Katharina Hülsmann (Düsseldorf):
Navigating the Visibility of the Fan Comic

Respondents: Stephan Packard (Cologne) & Sven Stollfuß (Leipzig)

16.15h-16.30h: Coffee Break

16.30h-18.30h: PANEL 2: Nostalgia, Ideology and Politics

Giorgio Busi Rizzi (Bologna/Leuven):
Seduction of the Innocence: Comics Fandom and Nostalgia

Franke Andersen/Thessa Jensen (Aalborg):
Unravelling the Connections between Comics Studies and Fan Studies in the Context of Political Correctness: The Case of Hergé’s Boy Scout Reporter Tintin

Vanessa Ossa (Tübingen):
Comicsgate (2018)

Respondents: Peter Scheinpflug (Cologne) & Tanja Weber (Cologne)

18.30h-19.00h: Coffee Break/Snack

19.00h: KEYNOTE

Matt Hills (Huddersfield):
Transmedia Trajectories of Comic Book Fandom in an Era of Blockbuster “Cinematic Universes” and Franchise “Expansions”: Logics of Distinction or Conciliation?

Day 2 | March 29, 2019

9.30h-10.15h: Meeting of the Committee for Comics Studies (AG Comicforschung) and the Committee for the Studies of Fandom and Participatory Culture (AG Partizipations- und Fanforschung)

10.15h-10.30h: Coffee Break

10.30h-12.30h: PANEL 3: Genre, Gender, and Marginalized Identities

Sydney Heifler (Oxford):
Masculine Memory in the Creation of a National History: Fandom and Historiography of Western Comics through a Case Study of Romance Comics

Iris Haist (Cologne):
Wonder Woman – Research on the Possible Influence by a Changed (Female) Readership on Story and Art Work

Shromona Das (New Delhi):
Framing the Gutter: Mapping the Fandom, Materiality and Production in ‘Grassroot Comics’

Respondents: Véronique Sina (Cologne) & Peter Vignold (Bochum)

12.30h-14.00h: Lunch Break

14.00h-16.00h: PANEL 4: Comics Fandom and other (Sub)Cultures

Timo Thelen (Kanazawa):
Searching for the Titans’ Home: Imagination of Place and Transnational Comic Fan Tourism

Monica Geraffo (Los Angeles):
Secret Identities: Marvel Superheroes, Fashion Trends, and Subcultural Streetwear, 1975-1995

Frederik Gooding (Fort Worth):
Without a Trace: Sketching out the Connection between Comics & Hip Hop

Respondents: Sophie Einwächter (Frankfurt a.M./Marburg) & Mathias Mertens (Cologne)

16.00h: Final Discussion


Organization: Sophie G. Einwächter (Frankfurt a.M./Marburg), Vanessa Ossa (Tübingen), Véronique Sina (Cologne), Sven Stollfuß (Leipzig)

CONF: Comics/Fandom (Köln, 28-29 Mar 19). In:, Feb 13, 2019 (accessed Mar 3, 2024), <>.