Episode 504-With Lauren O’Connor

On August 24, 2021, in Podcast, by Patrick Hester

Robin and the Making of American Adolescence by Lauren R. O'ConnorThis week, Patrick and Tracy welcome Lauren O’Connor, author of Robin and the Making of American Adolescence.

About Robin and the Making of American Adolescence: Holy adolescence, Batman! Robin and the Making of American Adolescence offers the first character history and analysis of the most famous superhero sidekick, Robin. Debuting just a few months after Batman himself, Robin has been an integral part of the Dark Knight’s history—and debuting just a few months prior to the word “teenager” first appearing in print, Robin has from the outset both reflected and reinforced particular images of American adolescence. Closely reading several characters who have “played” Robin over the past eighty years, Robin and the Making of American Adolescence reveals the Boy (and sometimes Girl!) Wonder as a complex figure through whom mainstream culture has addressed anxieties about adolescents in relation to sexuality, gender, and race. This book partners up comics studies and adolescent studies as a new Dynamic Duo, following Robin as he swings alongside the ever-changing American teenager and finally shining the Bat-signal on the latter half of “Batman and—.”

About Lauren O’Connor: LAUREN R. O’CONNOR holds a doctorate in American Culture Studies from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio and a master of arts in Counseling and Human Services. She is based in Batavia, Illinois. She is a licensed adolescent counselor and studies the history of the American teenager and has published in the Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics, the Journal of Popular Culture, and contributed a chapter to Uncanny Bodies: Superhero Comics and Disability.

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© 2021 Patrick Hester

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