Bowling Green State University’s
Department of Popular Culture
The Browne Popular Culture Library
Present the

Spider-Man in Popular
Culture Conference
September 29 & 30, 2023

In 2023, the Department of Popular Culture and the Browne Popular Culture Library at Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio celebrate Spider-Man, one of the most iconic and universally recognized super-heroes of all-time with the Spider-Man in Popular Culture Conference.  Spider-Man is a complex, enigmatic, and tragically appealing crime-fighter who has conquered all forms of mass media and popular culture.  Join us as we celebrate, discuss and debate the cultural significance of Spider-Man and his impact upon comics, mass media, and our society at large.

Call for Papers and Presentations 

The Department of Popular Culture and the Browne Popular Culture Library at Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio are proud to announce the Spider-Man in Popular Culture Conference on Friday, September 29 and Saturday, September 30, 2023.  The Spider-Man in Popular Culture conference aims to examine Spider-Man in Popular Culture in all mediums and media.  It is intended to serve as a space for academics, graduate students, comic industry professionals, retailers and fans to engage in dialogue about topics related to Spider-Man in its many media forms, mediums and cultural influence in popular culture and beyond. The scope of this conference is deliberately broad, with the intention of highlighting the interdisciplinary nature and many different avenues of research possible related to Spider-Man in Popular Culture.  

Possible topics might include but are not limited to: 

  • Textual analysis of graphic novels, storylines, other texts related to Spider-Man
  • In-depth analysis of particular authors & artists work related to Spider-Man
  • The development of supporting characters, villains, and themes within the Spider-Man mythos
  • Spider-Man in Popular Music
  • Spider-Man in Film, Television, and Animation
  • The rise of Spider-Man-centric podcasts
  • Spider-Man as a mass merchandising phenomenon
  • Spiderman VS. Alternate Heroes (Miles Morales, Ben Reilly, Jessica Drew, Gwen Stacy, and others)
  • Spider-Man and video games
  • The role of diversity issues (race, gender, ethnicity, sexuality) within Spider-Man’s world
  • Spider-Man within the Comics Industry (writing, drawing, retailing, etc.)
  • Spider-Man art and covers across the decades
  • How authors build an audience in an era of subgenre specialization
  • Reception and fan communities for Spider-Man and the superhero genre
  • Digital Humanities approaches to Comics and Mass Media Studies with emphasis on Spider-Man

We welcome individual proposals or pre-formed panels that address any or all of these themes. As the conference seeks to provide a multitude of perspectives, academic presentations and those from outside the academy are welcome.

Please send a 300-word abstract describing your individual presentation to with “Spider-Man in Popular Culture” in the subject line. (Panel, roundtable, performance, and artistic display proposals should include a 300 proposal for each individual and a 500-word proposal explaining the group presentation.) Submissions should be sent in a document attachment with the following information:  

Author’s name/Title
Institutional Affiliation (if applicable)
Email address
Presentation Title and Abstract

Deadline for Submissions is Friday, March 31, 2023.  

BGSU Department of Popular CultureBGSU University Libraries

Updated: 06/05/2023 09:46AM