Diagram for Delinquents:

Fredric Wertham and the Evolution of Comic Books

This documentary will study Fredric Wertham’s crusade to link comics with juvenile delinquency, which helped spur burnings of comic books in the United States, Congressional hearings into the role of comics and juvenile delinquency, and the creation of the Comics Code Authority as a censoring body. The documentary will also explore these events in light of comics’ subsequent evolution into more sophisticated material that is no longer primarily children’s fare. To illustrate this story, the documentary will use recreations and Wertham’s own files, most of which has never been seen before.

In order to make this documentary a reality, we’re asking for pledges from supporters through 24 April 2011 at 6:17pm Eastern Time.  In return for these pledges, we’re offering various rewards, including the movie poster and DVD, Sequart books and other DVDs, and even credits on the film.  This is currently the only way you can order our upcoming book on PlanetaryKeeping the World Strange, and our upcoming documentary, Warren Ellis: Captured Ghosts. Every dollar counts!

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Robert A. Emmons Jr. is a documentary filmmaker focusing on American popular culture and history. His films include Enthusiast: The 9th Art, Wolf at the Door, Yardsale!, Goodwill: The Flight of Emilio Carranza, and De Luxe: The Tale of Blue Comet. His Goodwill was screened as part of the Smithsonian exhibition "Our Journeys / Our Stories: Portraits of Latino Achievement," won Best Homegrown Documentary Feature at the 2008 Garden State Film Festival, and led to him receiving Mexico's Lindbergh-Carranza International Goodwill Award as a "Messenger of Peace." From February to August 2010, Emmons created two short documentaries a week; the 52 short documentaries formed the weekly internet series MINICONCEPTDOCS. His print work focusing on electronic media, documentary film, and comic books include Who's Responsible Here? Media, Audience, and Ethics (Cognella, 2009), The Encyclopedia of Documentary Film (Routletdge, 2005), Small Tech: The Culture of Digital Tools (University of Minnesota 2007), and The Encyclopedia of Latino and Latina History (Facts on File, 2010). He teaches film, new media, and comics history at Rutgers University-Camden, where he is also the Associate Director of the Honors College. For more information, visit robertemmons.com.

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