• Please share this important information with students in your classes or those whom you meet in your offices:

    The Queens College Carroll and Milton Petrie Student Emergency Grant Fund has been created to […]


    Here is the study guide for the midterm.


    On Nicholasa Mohr’s Nilda
    On Tomas Rivera’s And the Earth Did Not Devour Him
    On Sandra Cisneros’s The House on Mango Street
    On Justin […]

  • worchard posted a new page, on the site English 701 3 months, 2 weeks ago

    Books for Book Review Assignment


    Bell, Janice. Clean, Well-Lighted Sentences: A Guide to Avoiding the Most Common Errors in Grammar and Punctuation. Norton, 2009. (MICHELLE)

    Dreyer, Benjamin. […]

  • General Instructions:

    Write a one-page, singled spaced paper, using 12 pt. Times New Roman font.

    Although these are short essays, they should contain a clear introduction and conclusion, and body paragraphs […]

  • worchard posted a new page, on the site Latinx Childhood 5 months ago

    Pew Hispanic Center Statistics on Latinx Groups

    Rita Moreno Performing “America”

    NPR on Pura Belpré

    Anne Lamott Story About Kid Giving Blood

  • worchard posted a new page, on the site English 701 5 months, 1 week ago

    James Harner, Literary Research Guide (Rosenthal Reference, Level 3, Z2011 H34 2008)

    Oxford English Dictionary.

  • worchard posted a new page, on the site English 701 5 months, 2 weeks ago

    Week […]


    Week 1                                                                        

    Jan 29
    Bomba Estéreo, “Soy Yo”

    Cardi B memes

    Jan 31
    Rhode M […]

  • The panels for tonight’s mini-conference are:


    Maria on Batman’s gothic elements
    Monica on vigilantism in The Dark Knight
    Todd on the Dark Knight’s women
    Tab on vigilantism […]

  • Hello all,

    This is just a reminder that your final paper can be turned in any time before December 20.

  • worchard wrote a new post, Final Blog Post, on the site Superhero 7 months, 3 weeks ago

    Hello all,

    For the final blog post, write a short response to the Hernandez’s God and Science. The response may do any of the following, but should draw our attention to a specific page from the text: […]

    • The Ti-Girls only group is a pretty cool superhero pack. One of the characters that want to be a superhero reminds me of the mother from the shadow hero because she has this idea for her son to be a superhero. The main character in Marvels also becomes a superhero in her own way. The idea of being a superhero, saving lives, fighting crime being one with a superhero team, or having your own superhero team, whether they have read about it, or to find a purpose in life. I also see in God and Science Return of the Ti-Girls when the one girl who lives with the landlord desires to be with the Ti-Girls and so becomes that superhero with the help of one of the Ti-Girls.

    • One of the strengths I noticed about this comic is how much more organic the characters and setting are compared to other comics we’ve read. Compared to the Green Lantern/Green Arrow series, the T-Girls book never seems forced or didactic nor does the cumulative effect of comics’ innate serialization ever muddle my understanding of what’s going on. I suspect that this comic had an influence on the America Chavez comic one way or another and that the “vibe” established in God and Science was one the America creative team was attempting to emulate. The light-hearted metafiction behind the pursuit of superpowers is a charming in-joke for hardcore comic fans without alienating newcomers to the series and the depiction of multiple generations of super-powered women assisting each other and relying on one another for comfort and advice is a stark contrast-and somewhat of a relief- from the MArvel/DC model of ultra-masculine hyperthyroidism. Those companies might want to pay closer attention if they wish to lure in more female readers.
      This comic might have been the most charming of all the books we’ve read. It establishes a world as fully realized as any of the best sci-fi and fantasy through an experiential impact rather than a massive world-building campaign.
      An excellent way to finish out the course.

    • This comic book’s plot by Jamie Hernandez was different than most comic books that we have read so far. One of the things that I liked about it was that the characters are all female illustrated with imperfect body images except for some characters like Penny Century. Penny Century actually reminded me of an amalgamation of Wonder Woman and Superman. She reminded me of Wonder Woman because of her physical features, wit and maternal instincts, especially in one instance where in the last panel, Wonder Woman is hugging a baby and praising motherhood. On the other hand, she reminded me of Superman because of her super strength compared to the other characters.

    • This reminded me of the campy Batman series of the late 60’s early 70’s and it felt a lot more lighthearted than some of the other comics we have read( I am looking at you Watchmen and TDKR). This comic did not take itself as seriously as some of its predecessors and that is a nice change of pace. I love that everything but the covers is in black and white it is a nice homage to the older comics.

    • “The Ti-Girls” was a pretty interesting read. As I read through it, it became clearer and clearer that it was a piece of creative criticism; not only did it tell a story using the graphic novel genre, but it also took time to address some of the pivotal publication issues there have been throughout history. One of the critical approaches this comic takes is its address of female heroism in publication history. There are very few male characters in this narrative, and none of them play a heroic role, so the emphasis is definitely placed on the function of female heroes. I was very amused by the self-actualized moment on page 82 of the comic when Angel’s mother is explaining “the gift” to her daughter. “No, no! That’s another special thing about it. Guys don’t get it. They gotta go out an’ have lab accidents and other stuff to get their cojones but we got it born right in us.” Not only is that quote hilariously accurate, but it also places power directly in the hands of the female characters here. Females are the only ones who naturally inherit powers in this world. I thought it was also significant that in such a female-empowered society, there was still the character of Dr. Zolar who sought to capitalize on the heroines’ powers and abilities. With all of Penny Century’s character flaws, I think it can be argued that he’s the real villain of this narrative; not only does he try to financially manipulate the superheroes, but he also romantically manipulates them and tries to pit them against each other, especially in the case of Espectra/Fuerza and Golden Girl. I think it’s certainly possible to read him as a symbolic representation of the masculine capitalist enterprise that has nonetheless taken advantage of empowered, individualistic female superheroes.

  • Hello all,

    I ran into problems with Interlibrary Loan locating the Oyola article on God and Science. I resubmitted my request before Thanksgiving, but it still hasn’t arrived.  So, this reading isn’t required […]

  • worchard wrote a new post, Revised Deadline, on the site Superhero 8 months, 1 week ago

    Revised Deadline for Draft + Outline: Saturday, November 17

  • It seems like many of you still need time to finish the bibliography and/or locate sources.  Since I am still grading your first papers, and hope to begin returning these to you tomorrow, let’s extend the […]

  • The short paper and research paper assignment sheets have been added to the “Handouts” section of the course blog, in case you need to refer to them later.

  • Coworkers’ wandering eyes in the faculty room were intrigued by the “demonic possession” title of Ramzi Fawaz’s article “Consumption by Hellfire: Demonic Possession and the Limits  of the Superhuman in the 1980s, […]

    • Can you compare the Hellfire Club’s meaningless concerns in regards to the “potential immortality of manipulating Jean Grey…[the] disloyalty of exploiting fellow mutants for financial gain” to current society (Fawaz, 221)?

      By this you mean most of the GOP’s platform for 2020?

      I’m kidding, of course. The Hellfire Club is a much more efficient organization than either of our political parties. Their ruthless pursuit of power is aptly summed up by their name, something that reminds me of a description of Littlefinger in the Game of Thrones series: “He would see this country burn if he could be king of the ashes.” The astonishing lack of conceptualization and imagination in the Inner Circle of the club seems impossibly crass, base, and foolish. Why would a global cabal attempt to manipulate a godlike entity for their own materialistic purpose? Isn’t that religion’s job?
      Sadly, the Hellfire Club reflects our own reality all too well. They are ambitious, egotistical, power-hungry degenerates who cannot find satiety despite having an embarrassment of riches. How many real-world power brokers attempt to manipulate forces they do not understand to tyrannize their fellows? The arguments here can apply to gun control, abortion rights, nuclear energy, fossil fuels, climate change, just to name a few. Phoenix is life incarnate and thus the center of all science, religion, and philosophy. The Hellfire Club’s attempt to control her is just one more version of the most ancient tale of man’s overreaching arrogance, going back to Genesis. Pun intended.

    • The first quote in your 1st question was regarding the “immortality” of manipulating Jean….I got to thinking on that for a while and decided to look it up on pg 220 of Fawwaz’s essay. It is the “IMMORALITY” of manipulating Jean…BUT…going along YOUR exact words(immortality), I can still see a relevance in that, as in, a moral decay in society as a cost of securing huge financial windfall for the next ten generations to come who belong to that powerful dynasty, THUS cementing their FINANCIAL IMMORTALITY. I actually liked your quote, as what Fawwaz says is quite already obvious and goes without saying. Currently there is just speculation and nothing on paper. not just the current administration being accused of placing family in key positions for financial gain, but conspiracy theories of the W administration and its lackeys on having profiteered from the Iraq invasion on false pretenses.

    • Fawaz argues that “demonic possession [i]s a metaphor for the rapacious expansion of late capitalism” (205) and that “The Dark Phoenix Saga” simultaneously implicates individuals and the societal structures they inhabit for the corruption that comes from the quest for economic power (209). Jean’s transformation(s) in the Saga exemplify this. Just as the economic elite rely on the labor and spending of the lower classes, Wyngarde and his peers in the Hellfire Club rely on Jean – a non-elite (in regards to finances and political power) – as the “key to [their] victory” (Claremont 74). Later, Jean realizes that Wyngarde had accessed her “most private fantasies – the prepressed, dark side of [her] soul,” indicating a desire for upward mobility that is common – and just as commonly unrealized – among the lower and middle classes (Claremont 107). Her assertion that Wyngarde “gaver [her] what [she] secretly wanted and used that to destroy [her]” (107) is resonant of Fawaz’s claim that when it comes to moral deterioration as a consequence of consumerism, societal structures (in this case, symbolized by Wyngarde and his elite club) are as culpable as individual choice; although Jean admits to a personal, although secret desire to rise in status, Jean would likely not have succumbed to her “dark” side without a corrupting influence. Jean’s transformation is related as primarily a consequence of outside forces, and this is highlighted by the image of a strong, crushing hand that represents the power of the economic elites over all others (107). Ultimately, Jean is helpless against the transformation to Dark Phoenix, suggesting that individual agency is minimal when opposed with the strength of outside forces; the only way Jean can protect herself and others from her God-like powers is to self-destruct.

    • I found Fawaz’s arguments in his essay really exquisite. Before this reading, I never really thought about the Marxist dichotomy between superpowers and capitalism or the gendering of possession. I think what intrigued me the most, however, was the concept of demonic (or in this case “alien”) possession, and how it ultimately challenges the role of a superhero. By our primary understanding of superheroes as confirmed in Coogan’s definition of superheroism, we often define superheroes by their powers; therefore, the idea that a superhero’s acquisition of powers can potentially negate their identity as a superhero is fascinating.
      As Mind Master articulates in Issue 129 of the “The Dark Pheonix Saga,”Within her angel’s soul–As in all our souls–lurks a devil, a yang counterpart to the surface yin” (7). According to most moral philosophy, each of us possesses a potential for both good and evil. As Jean’s psychic capabilities as The Pheonix begins to grow, her morality is compromised which addresses another aspect of Coogan’s definition, mission.
      When we consider Jean Grey’s exemplification of superheroism in “The Dark Pheonix Saga,” we are placed in an interesting position as her mission and powers are juxtaposed with one another. She progresses in terms of power, but when her acquisition of power comes to the detriment of the universe, she makes the decision to sacrifice herself and relinquish her power, thereby, preserving her mission. Although Jean is initially able to use the Pheonix’s power to save the world, the Pheonix’s desire to gain more power leads to the destruction of several worlds, and as a result, “Jean decides to sacrifice her own life…choosing to rob Pheonix of its human host rather than see the universe, and her mutant family, obliterated by its power” (Fawaz 208). In order to “assess” Jean’s role as a superhuman in the saga, the reader must choose between which aspect of a superhero’s definition constitutes their superheroism more: their powers or their mission. If we believe that powers are the variable that exemplify a character’s identity as a superhuman, than Jean’s superhumanism is actually compromised. However, if we consider their mission to be more important than their powers, than Jean demonstrates the ultimate act of superheroism as paralleled before her by other sacrificial characters such as Christ and Beowulf. Personally, I believe that Jean’s superhumanism is exemplified in her sacrifice. I know that Fawaz commented a lot about the correlation between Jean’s powers and the theme of female liberation and gender politics, but when it boils down to a superhero’s purpose, I think that Jean’s identity as the Pheonix is best exemplified when decides to relinquish her power for the sake of her mission.

    • I believe Jean Grey idealism behind her powers exemplify her being superhuman according to Fawaz “ “All creation is her domain to do as she pleases” pg 211 She is an ideal God like figure with her powers as she seem unstoppable. Fawaz continues “The narrator begins by equating her original manifestation of Phoenix with the universal “goodness” of human race”pg 211 Jean superhuman ideology revolves around what she does with her powers. Her superhuman abilities make her seem both like a god and devil. She can either save humans or pass on corrupt judgement.

    • Can you compare the Hellfire Club’s meaningless concerns in regards to the “potential immortality of manipulating Jean Grey…[the] disloyalty of exploiting fellow mutants for financial gain” to current society (Fawaz, 221)?
      Well prof. Orchard that is a tough cookie to crack. I will go with my gut and say that the Hellfire Club is doing what Bernie Madoff did to his investors. Hear me out please, the aforementioned club is trying to gain the golden goose of power, immortality. By doing so, they are stripping themselves of any kind moral and ethics to reach this goal. The same could be said in today’s times when powerhouses like Odedrecht (an international construction company) obtained power and influence in many countries by buying corrupt politicians. Furthermore, the Hellfire Club and Odebrecht seem to have in common this desperately need to retain power at any cost. Thus, Fawaz insightful argument is valid and, more importantly is a reflection that the social corruption continues to be a problematic in the comics genre.

    • Can you compare the Hellfire Club’s meaningless concerns in regards to the “potential immortality of manipulating Jean Grey…[the] disloyalty of exploiting fellow mutants for financial gain” to current society (Fawaz, 221)?

      I really find it interesting how Fawaz is re-interpret’s Jean Grey’s ultimate corruption and destruction; he writes, “[R]ather than an expression of Jean’s inability to control her evil impulses, it is the Hellfire Club’s manipulation of her personal investments away from the X-Men toward the aristocratic trappings of the Club’s inner circle that facilitates the birth of Dark Phoenix” (221). In considering your first question, professor, it’s a bit of the dark-side of the American Dream — that there are personal sacrifices that need to be made and relationships that need to be used (or abused) to our advantage to gain forward momentum in our Capitalistic society. In the fantasy world Wyndgarde constructs, Jean falls prey to the “old-world” ideals of marrying up for your own personal benefit and gain, and in the real-world we see what that “marrying up” has morphed into as we have moved from a feudalistic society into a more economic/capitalist society. Jean’s dilemma with this, though, stems from a manipulated struggle between her own wants and desire (however manipulated they are) and what she wants to uphold as a member of the X-Men. I think this reflects out society too as the “norms” tend to tell us to uphold conflicting values about family and community, while also being encouraged to continually seek professional growth (promotions, higher salaries, devoting time to employer, etc.).

    • In the “Dark Phoenix,” narcissism is presented in various ways that can relate to both genders. Jean Grey desires to wed an aristocratic man to avoid any financial issues. Like Todd mentioned in his post, she believes in the idea of “marrying up” (hypergamy). On the same token, the Mastermind desires Jean Grey for her powers so he could “level up” and dominate the world additionally with her powers. So, he desires power for his own financial need. They both are taking advantage of each other’s opportunities and statuses for their own advancement.
      In addition, the time period of the comics is also significant. Tom Wolfe considered the 1970s and 1980s as “the ‘Me’ Decade” (Fawaz, 201). It was a time of self-exploration; freeing your body, desires and even clothes. For instance, Storm is the only X-men that wears the least amount of clothes as the others and is too free with her body. Because she is part of nature, she is a great example who desires freeing herself of oppressed positions.
      Throughout the comics, especially in the “Dark Phoenix”, Jean’s last name “Grey” symbolizes her perplexed state as a mutant superhero or “god”. She is not black or white; she is grey, in between and stuck in the middle. By then end, she cannot choose to be completely good or evil. Ultimately, she chooses to be on the good side again which then leads to her destruction by the act of sacrifice.

  • worchard posted a new page, on the site Superhero 10 months, 2 weeks ago

    Sign Up Sheet for Main Blog Entry and Class Leadership
    English 781

    September 6 on Umberto Eco, “The Myth of Superman”


    September 13 on Ben Saunders, “Wonder Woman: Bondage and Liberat […]

  • worchard posted a new page, on the site SUPERHEROES 10 months, 2 weeks ago

    Sign Up Sheet: Main Blog Entry and Class Leadership
    English 391


    Sept 4 on Umberto Eco’s “The Myth of Superman”

    Michell E.

    September 6 on Matt Yockey’s “Wonder Woman for a Day”

    M […]

  • worchard posted a new page, on the site SUPERHEROES 11 months ago

    José Alaniz, Death, Disability, and the Superhero

    Tom de Haven, Our Hero: Superman on Earth,

    Ramzi Fawaz, The New Mutants: Superheroes and the Radical Imagination of American Comics.

    J. B. Gabillet, Of […]

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