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Fred Francis

University of Kent

Project Title: Dark Ages: 19th Century American Fiction and the 1980s Superhero Comic

My research focuses on exposing and explaining the influence of 19th-Century American fiction on the 'Dark Age' of American superhero comics. I suggest in my thesis that the gothic or ‘Dark Romantic’ writing of Hawthorne, Melville and Poe should be seen as the textual foundation for the revisions to the superhero narrative that took place at DC comics during the latter half of the 1980s, particularly in the work of Frank Miller, Alan Moore, Grant Morrison and Neil Gaiman.

Supervised by Dr Will Norman and Dr Mike Collins.

About me

Research Interests

American fiction and American popular culture (particularly themes of re-enactment, the popular gothic, occultism and magic); Cultural Studies; Comics Studies.

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