Contributions by José Alaniz, Jessica Baldanzi, Eric Berlatsky, Peter E. Carlson, Sika A. Dagbovie-Mullins, Antero Garcia, Aaron Kashtan, Winona Landis, A. David Lewis, Martin Lund, Shabana Mir, Kristin M. Peterson, Nicholaus Pumphrey, Hussein Rashid, and J. Richard Stevens
Mainstream superheroes are becoming more and more diverse, with new identities for Spider-Man, Captain America, Thor, and Iron Man. Though the Marvel-verse is becoming much more racially, ethnically, and gender diverse, many of these comics remain shy about religion.
The new Ms. Marvel, Kamala Khan, is a notable exception, not only because she is written and conceived by two women, Sana Amanat and G. Willow Wilson, but also because both of these women bring their own experiences as Muslim Americans to the character.
This distinct collection brings together scholars from a range of disciplines including literature, cultural studies, religious studies, pedagogy, and communications to engage with a single character, exploring Khan's significance for a broad readership. While acknowledged as the first Muslim superhero to headline her own series, her character appears well developed and multifaceted in many other ways. She is the first character to take over an established superhero persona, Ms. Marvel, without a reboot of the series or death of the original character. The teenager is also a second-generation immigrant, born to parents who arrived in New Jersey from Pakistan.
With essays from and about diverse voices on an array of topics from fashion to immigration history to fandom, this volume includes an exclusive interview with Ms. Marvel author and cocreator G. Willow Wilson by gender studies scholar Shabana Mir.
About the Author
Jessica Baldanzi is professor of English at Goshen College, where she teaches comics and graphic novels, as well as recent American literature, media and popular culture, creative writing, and critical theory. Her article "Beyond Hair Bows and Cleavage" was published in Lessons Drawn: Essays on the Pedagogy of Comics and Graphic Novels, and her review blog, Commons Comics, helps promote comics for a general readership. Hussein Rashid is contingent faculty member at The New School and founder of Islamicate, L3C, a consultancy focusing on religious literacy and cultural competency. His work has appeared in Muslim World, the Journal of Africana Religions, and The Oxford Handbook of American Islam, and he also served as the content lead for the Children's Museum of Manhattan's America to Zanzibar: Muslim Cultures Near and Far exhibit.