William F. Wu Comic Book Collection

will wu coverDate Range:
Survey Conducted: Wed, 2009-04-08
Creator: Wu, William F. (1951-)

History: William F. Wu is a Chinese-American science-fiction writer who has published thirteen novels and more than fifty short stories. Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Wu attended the University of Michigan as an undergraduate, and later returned to earn his Ph.D in American Culture. During this time he became active in East Wind, an Asian American student group. His doctoral dissertation titled The Yellow Peril (1981) documents evolving depictions of Chinese and Chinese-Americans in American fiction.Wu has been nominated for the Nebula Award, World Fantasy Award and the Hugo Award, twice individually and once as a member of the Wild Cards. Hong on the Range, set in a futuristic version of the wild west, was chosen for the Wilson Library Bulletin’s list of science fiction “Books Too Good To Miss” and was a selection for the American Library Association list of Best Books for Young People, the New York Public Library’s Recommended Books for the Teen Age, and was also a Young Adult Editor’s Choice by Booklist Magazine.

Summary: The collection consists of comic books with Asian characters, which William F. Wu collected over the course of several years. Spanning the years 1942 to 1986, the books contain an abundance of representations of Asians in popular American culture. Many stereotypical depictions of Asians and Asian Americans – such as “Chinamen” and martial arts experts – are present, as are characters with exaggeratedly “Asian” features. Many of the comics also contain advertisements for martial arts books and courses. Although most of the books were published by well-known comic book companies such as DC Comics, Marvel, Atlas and Charlton, comics from smaller companies such as Wings Publishing Company, Real Adventures Publishing Company and Rotten Comics are also included. Titles include Superman, Iron Man, Spiderman, Batman, Jonah Hex, The Justice League of America, Yang, Deadly Hands of Kung Fu, Weird War Tales and Starfire. The earliest comics in the collection are Captain Marvel and Green Hornet. The books are largely arranged by publisher and in some cases by comic title.

Total Size: 6 linear feet and 6 boxes
APA-related Size: 6 linear feet and 6 boxes
Languages of materials: English
Arrangement: other
Location: Fales Library & Special Collections, New York University
Bibliographic Control: finding aid
Finding Aid Link: http://dlib.nyu.edu/findingaids/html/fales/wu
Conditions Governing Access: Currently inaccessible to the public.

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