The Ages of Batman: Essays on the Dark Knight

deadline for submissions: 
January 10, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
Joseph J. Darowski

The editor of The Ages of Batman: Essays on the Dark Knight is seeking abstracts for essays that could be included in the upcoming collection. The essays should examine the relationships between the DC comic book adventures of Batman and the social era when those comic books were published. Analysis may demonstrate how Batman’s comic books stories and the creators who produced the comics embrace, reflect, or critique aspects of their contemporary culture. This will be a companion volume to existing essay collections in the series that have already focused on Superman, Wonder Woman, the X-Men, the Avengers, Iron Man, Hulk, the Justice League, Flash, and Black Panther.

Potential chapters include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Contextualizing the Bat: Influences and References in Batman’s First Year of Comics

  • The Early Villains: Social Fears as Rogues Gallery

  • Not-So-Grim-n-Gritty: The Silly Adventures of Batman

  • The Cold War Hits Gotham: Social Influences on Popular Culture

  • What Masculine Heroism Means in the Vietnam Era

  • A Billionaire Hero in the 1980s

  • It’s...Problematic: The Cultural Moment Surrounding The Killing Joke

  • Sale and Loeb’s WhoDunnIt: Batman: The Long Halloween and Literary Mysteries

  • A Death in the Family: Comic Books, Death, and Fan Interaction

  • Barbara Gordon’s Changing Roles

  • Batman as Corporation: The Expansion of the Batfamily

  • Snyder’s Court of Owls and Changing the Face of Villainy in Gotham

  • Batman/Catwoman and Romance in a (N)Everchanging Continuity

Essays should focus on stories featuring Batman from his own comic book series or team series. Issues of the Justice League or other teams that have included Batman as a member would be welcome for analysis, so long as the analysis focuses primarily on Batma, as would an analysis of any DC mini-series or event storyline that included Batman as a principal character. Similarly, essays focusing on characters that are closely associated with Batman would be acceptable. Robin, Batgirl, Nightwing, the Joker, and so one could serve as topics for essays in this collection.

Essays should solely focus on comic book adventures, not media adaptations of the characters. Furthermore, essays should look at a single period of comic book history, rather than drawing comparisons between different publication eras. For example, an essay that analyzed Batman comics from the early 1980s and contextualized them with what was happening in American society would be more likely to be accepted than an essay that contrasted 2020s comic books with 1940s comic books. The completed essays should be approximately 15-20 double-spaced pages in MLA format.

Abstracts (100-500 words) and CVs should be submitted by January 10, 2022.

This will be a peer-reviewed project.

Please submit via email to Joseph Darowski, agesofsuperheroes@gmail.com.

Publisher: McFarland & Company