Because I never do things in half-measures, next week, April 20-23 is going to be filled with panel appearances, comics, and con shenanigans!
On Thursday, April 20, from 1-4pm at the University of Illinois-Chicago African-American Cultural Center Gallery, I’ll be speaking as part of the UIC Comics, Culture, and Society Symposium. This event is FREE to the public to attend. I’m honored to be joining Valentino L. Zullo and Leila Abdelrazaq in this symposium. I’ll be giving a presentation about Asian American/Pacific Islander representation in geek culture, the significance of those stories as a means to explore identity, and how fandom can provide opportunities for AAPI to network and build communities. My presentation will run from 2-3pm, but please do come for the entire symposium!
Immediately following, you can find me all three days at C2E2, Friday, April 21-Sunday, April 23! I’ll be on four panels this year!
Friday, April 21
You Have Died from Exposure: The Importance of Compensating Geeky Marginalized Creators
6:45-7:45pm, Room S405a
With Jennifer Cross, Tanya DePass, Charlie Hawkins, and Suzanne Walker
“Do It for the Exposure!” “Aren’t you just grateful to have this opportunity?” Too often, marginalized creators are thrown these adages as compensation for their hard work and creativity in lieu of financial redress like their privileged counterparts. We will be discussing the importance of equal compensation for equal work, the benefit of outreach, and how it’s led to opening the geek culture markets for creators & consumers who don’t look like or think in “mainstream”.
More than a Sidekick: Expanding Visibility for Asian American Characters and Creators in Comics
8-9pm, Room S405a
With Gene Ha, Draven Katayama, Mark Martell, Mary Anne Mohanraj, and Natalia Roxas
Asian Americans are often relegated to the role of sidekicks in comics, but new generations of creators and characters are changing that narrative. This panel will examine the evolution of Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) representation in comics–both on and behind the page–and how these characters and their AAPI creators are fighting for wider recognition and opportunities in the industry. This panel is co-sponsored in part by Chicago Nerd Social Club. #MoreThanSidekicks
(I even made a nifty flyer to help promote the panel!)
Saturday, April 22
Racebending.com Presents Diverse Means for Diverse Worlds
1:45-2:45pm, Room S403
With Gabrial Canada, C. Spike Trotman, Professor Turtel Onli, and Mary Anne Mohanraj
Racebending.com has assembled a mixture of independent publishers and creators who saw a lack of diverse content in their fields and began publishing to provide a home for those stories. We will tackle the issues and opportunities that independent publishing presents for creators and fans who support diverse representation and storytelling in comics.
Sunday, April 23
Reblog, Retweet, Resist! Hashtag Movements and Fan Activism presented by Racebending.com
1:30-2:30pm, Room S405b
With Gabrial Canada, Tanya DePass, Mikki Kendall, and Mary Ann Mohanraj
A discussion how social media has transformed pop culture fans into popular movements through fan activism and hashtag campaigns.
Hope to see you there!