Comics and Social Justice


Generations of children and youth have spent many hours reading comics, traveling to far away lands, feeding their fascination for superheroes, and learning about people much like themselves facing real-life issues. 

Research shows comics are a great medium to address timely social issues, from pandemic diseases and racial injustice to wealth inequality, immigration and more. 

Comics and Social Justice - SDSU Big Ideas

A grassroots collaboration between humanists, educators, librarians, scientists, and artists from across SDSU and the wider San Diego community envisions becoming the nation's leading comic studies collaborative. 

They believe the study of comics can bring transformational experiences that advocate for social justice, imagine audacious solutions to seemingly unsolvable problems, and promote the idea that individuals can make a difference. The SDSU Library curates a large collection of comics that will serve as an innovative resource for teaching and research.

Big Ideas Champions

  • Elizabeth Pollard, Ph.D., History
  • Pamela Jackson, Library
  • William Nericcio, Ph.D., English
  • Gregory Daddis, Ph.D., History
  • David Cline, Ph.D., History
  • John Putman, Ph.D. Arts & Letters Dean’s Office
  • Mary Ellen Stout, Student Health Services
  • Karen May-Newman, Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering

Team Members

  • Ajani Brown, Africana Studies
  • Neil Kendricks, Ph.D., Art
  • Raechel Dumas, Ph.D., History
  • Eric Boime, Ph.D., SDSU Imperial Valley Dean’s Office
  • Yetta Howard, Ph.D., English and Comparative Literature
  • Diana Leong, Ph.D., English and Comparative Literature
  • Walter Penrose, Ph.D., History
  • Van Tarpley, Ph.D., History
  • Wil Weston, Library
  • Karen May-Newman, Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering
  • Suzanne Bordelon, Ph.D., Rhetoric & Writing Studies
  • Amira Jarmakani, Ph.D., Women’s Studies