By Madeline B. Gangnes
The 2018 University of Florida Conference on Comics and Graphic Novels, “ImageTech: Comics and Materiality,” featured three keynote speakers whose presentations approached the topic of materiality from perspectives ranging from handmade comics to digital comics and fan culture. The conference’s first speaker, Dr. Aaron Kashtan, spoke about the ways in which comics fans have historically engaged with the materiality of comics, and how comics fandom itself has been misperceived and misrepresented. Next, Dr. Mita Mahato shared a selection of her paper cutout comics and described her personal and professional relationships with materiality in connection with illness and the environment. Finally, Dr. Anastasia Salter explored relationships between comics and internet studies through the potentially toxic power of nostalgia in geek culture. Dr. Mahato was unable to share a written essay of her talk, so we offer a summary of her presentation. We are pleased to include essay versions of Dr. Salter’s and Dr. Kashtan’s keynote addresses in this forum.
Read the Keynote Addresses here: