Dr. Ben Saunders, Professor of English, University of Oregon, will give a feminist-queer analysis of the extensive bondage imagery in early (1940s) Wonder Woman comics and will also explore the psychological theories of Wonder Woman’s first writer,William Moulton Marston. Marston, a Harvard-trained psychologist and self-styled “inventor of the polygraph machine,” had some idiosyncratic notions about gender relations and believed that his theories were entirely compatible with a sincere feminist politics. The talk raises questions on the relationships between feminism, history, sexuality, and popular culture. Professor Saunders, author of two monographs and numerous articles, specializes in the literature of the English Renaissance and the history of British and American comics and cartoons. He has given invited lectures at some of the most prestigious universities in both the United States and the United Kingdom, and is a regular speaker at comic-book conventions.
Keynote address at 3:30pm. The conference and keynote are free and open to the public. For conference schedule, see English Department home page under “conferences”. Sponsored by the Student Association, Parnassus, and the Special Events Committee