CFP: Assemble!: The Making and Re-Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe by September 30, 2014

full name / name of organization: 
Thomas Donaldson/Florida Southwestern State College
contact email: 

Call for Papers
Assemble!: The Making and Re-Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe

The editors of Assemble! The Making and Re-Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe are seeking contributors for an upcoming collection from McFarland Publishers. While scholars have examined Marvel characters in print, less consideration has been given to the implications of live action adaptions. Despite the recent success of Marvel Studios and the rising academic interest in superheroes, no one has yet offered a comprehensive examination of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This omission is surprising since the transition to film has provided new energy for comic book superheroes in US society. Looking beyond box office achievements, Marvel's establishment of its own movie studio has increased its cultural impact in the United States and around the world. This collection of essays will examine the ways the Marvel Cinematic Universe represents, constructs, and distorts American culture. For decades, Marvel Comics' emphasis on socially relevant characters and plots has generated fan engagement and popular appeal. In the new millennium, the success of Marvel Studios' films (and subsequent reactions) represent a new and unique engagement with social, political, and economic concerns that challenge established values and call into question cherished beliefs.

Though the characters from "The House of Ideas" have been portrayed on screen by numerous studios, this collection will focus specifically on the film and television products of Marvel Studios. It will seek to explain how the cultural meanings of the print characters were redefined to pave the way for the Marvel Studios' explosive success on the cultural stage. Some possible topics for essays include, but are not limited to, the following:

The Other as Hero; The Gendered Superhero; From Communism to an Endless War on Terror: Tony Stark's Adventures in Corporatism; The Mandarin: Old Stereotypes and New Media; Social Relevancy in Superhero Comic Book Movies; The Military and the Marvel Cinematic Universe; Identity and Power in Marvel Studio Films; Millennial Perspective in the Marvel Cinematic Universe; Superhero Politics: A New American Normal in the Marvel Cinematic Universe; Technology versus Faith: A Balancing Act Around Belief in the Marvel Cinematic Universe; Marvel's Avengers: Control, Power, and Post 9/11 Threats; Thor: Avoiding Godhood in the Marvel Cinematic Universe; Racism and Marvel Cinematic Universe.

We are also interested in essays that examine live action portrayals of licensed Marvel characters outside Marvel Studio productions, so long as scholars make clear the difference from the MCU.

Abstracts (100-300 words), Working Title, and CVs (with a 40 word bio) should be submitted by September 30, 2014

Please submit via email to William Svitavsky,