Race and political metaphor from Nat Turner to now.

by Elizabeth Young

Bride of Frankenstein, 1935. Universal Pictures. © Warner Bros. Entertainment.

Monster metaphors matter. They show what a culture demonizes and they provide a vocabulary for those who are marked as monstrous to resist. I have been tracking a particularly revealing and protean monster metaphor for some years. Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein offers no overt discussions of racial identity for the creature who is assembled from disparate corpses and reanimated and who then rebels violently against his maker. But the figure of a Black Frankenstein monster appears with surprising frequency in U.S. culture from the nineteenth century onward, across many media, in direct and indirect references, and in…


by Ronald Wimberly

This essay originally appeared in LAAB Magazine #4: This Was Your Life!, published by Beehive Books, 2019.


by Ben Passmore

This comic originally appeared in LAAB Magazine #4: This Was Your Life!, published by Beehive Books, 2019.


by Kim Jooha

Endman, by Karissa Sakumoto, 2019.

Deskilled Comics are intentionally poorly drawn comics. They are popular in the art comics world today; examples include the work of, Mushbuh, Kendra Yee, Mickey Zacchilli, Karrisa Sakumoto, Jaakko Pallasvuo, Kim Jooyoung, Ben Marra, Chris Harnan, Masano Hirayama, Char Esme, Ben Mendelewicz, and Isobel Neviazsky, as well as certain aspects of Patrick Kyle and Ginette Lapalme’s works.

Besides being examples of Deskilled art, these comics often incorporate written nonsense and incorrect grammar and spelling. They are not interested in plot or the psychology of characters. They feel spontaneous, improvisational, and unplanned. They prefer stream-of-consciousness. They do not…


by Nishat Akhtar

This comic originally appeared in LAAB Magazine #4: This Was Your Life!, published by Beehive Books, 2019.


A conversation with Leah Penniman at Soul Fire Farm.

Leah Penniman is a cofounder and codirector of Soul Fire Farm, which is located in upstate New York, northeast of Albany and not far from the borders of both Vermont and Massachusetts. Like many farms in the Northeast, Soul Fire features hoophouses, chickens, and rows of bountiful vegetable crops. But it also has a mission as “a people-of- color-led community farm committed to ending racism and injustice in the food system.”

Part of Soul Fire’s mission involves “training the next generation of activist farmers and strengthening the movements for food sovereignty and community self determination.” This training currently includes week…


by Jonathan Djob Nkondo

This comic originally appeared in LAAB Magazine #4: This Was Your Life!, published by Beehive Books, 2019.


On the political function of the Superhero Aesthetic, and the radical possibilities of the Supervillain.

by Ronald Wimberly

A while back I attended a talk Frank Wilderson III gave at Columbia University in which he compared and contrasted Django Unchained and Manderlay. At the time, I was unfamiliar with Wilderson’s work. He mentioned repeatedly that for anti-blackness to end, the world itself would have to end.

Referencing Alexandre Koyre’s The Astronomical Revolution, Fred Moten compared Black studies with Copernicus’ radical astronomical re-configuring of how we perceive our solar system. Both, Moten suggests, are “concerned with the radicalization of the earth’s foundations…the re-configuration or destruction of the world.”[1]

After nearly 15 years of working in comics…


by Tanna Tucker

This comic originally appeared in LAAB Magazine #4: This Was Your Life!, published by Beehive Books, 2019.


An interview with John Carpenter and Sandy King.

I mean — what do we expect to get from reading an interview with an artist? Haven’t they, with their body of work, given us the answers and even asked of us some questions of their own? I’d argue that the work says more about the author than the author can say about the work; there are elements of the work that speak of the artist’s unconscious.

John Carpenter has a whole career behind him. He’s an auteur whose work embodies a certain late 20th century, American outsider ethos: an ambivalent, bewildered nostalgia and disillusionment with the American dream; a…

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