Reading Comics in the Institute Library

New Comic Book Collection in the John F. Kennedy Institute of Freie Universität to Open November 25

№ 400/2014 from Nov 18, 2014

The greatly expanded collection of comics in the library of Freie Universität Berlin's John F. Kennedy Institute (JFKI) will be opened on November 25, 2014, with a presentation of current cartoons by the popular American cartoonist, Keith Knight. The expansion of the collection of American graphic novels and historical and current comics was made possible by the chair of the prestigious researcher of North American studies, Frank Kelleter. The collection is being added to continuously, thanks to cooperation with the Comic Arts Collection at Michigan State University – the largest collection of its kind. The library in the JFKI is the only academic library in Germany to systematically collect American comics. The vernissage is open to the public, and admission is free.

The PowerPoint presentation "They Shoot Black People, Don’t They?" features contemporary cartoons by comic artist Keith Knight that focus, for example, on the militarization of the police in the United States and their brutal actions against members of minority groups. Knight's humorous and satirical work is intended to promote a constructive dialogue among the population as a whole. His cartoons appear in publications such as the Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, or MAD Magazine.

A unique cooperation with Michigan State University has made the expansion of the comic collection at JFKI possible. The Comic Arts Collection at Michigan State University is giving the library double issues from its collection as a continuing donation. They include action comics from the 1960s and -70s, science fiction comics from the 1980s, and current superhero adaptions. The collection supports research and teaching at the John F. Kennedy Institute. Along with other popular primary sources such as newspapers, magazines, films, or TV series, comics are a resource constantly used in teaching and research at the John F. Kennedy Institute. They are used by all the departments at the institute. The collection is of particular interest to the “Popular Seriality—Aesthetics and Practice” Research Unit. Frank Kelleter is the chief investigator of the group and is an Einstein-Professor, funded by the Einstein Foundation Berlin.

Time and Location

  • Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 2 to 4 p.m.
  • John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Room 340, Lansstraße 7–9, 14195 Berlin; subway station: Dahlem-Dorf (U3)
  • The opening of the comic book collection is open to the public, and admission is free.   
  • Most of the collection is in the open stacks section of the library and can be borrowed under the usual conditions. Some comic books are kept in closed stacks and can be ordered for use in the reading rooms.

Further Information

Julia Mayer, Director, Library of the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies,
Tel.: +49 30 838-52858, Email: mayer@jfki.fu-berlin.de

Links to Further Information

Press Photo

This press photo is for representatives of the media to download and use in connection with reporting on the information in this press release. Image credit: private.

 

Keith Knight, Image credit: private

Caption: The greatly expanded collection of comics in the library of Freie Universität Berlin's John F. Kennedy Institute (JFKI) will be officially opened on November 25, 2014, with a presentation of current cartoons by the popular American cartoonist, Keith Knight.

(Photo for online publication: 180 dpi, resolution not suitable for printing)