Professor’s New Book Examines the History of Blacks in Comic Books

William H. Foster III is a professor of English and communications at Naugatuck Valley Community College in Waterbury, Connecticut. When Foster was growing up in Philadelphia in the 1950s, he had been an avid comic book reader and collector. But he was aware of the fact that there were very few black characters in comic books. When they did appear, he noted they reflected the racial stereotypes of American society. Blacks were portrayed as buffoons, criminals, or even cannibals.

Now Professor Foster has authored a new book — Dreaming of a Face Like Ours (Fine Tooth Press) — documenting the history of blacks in comics. He also has put together a traveling exhibit called “The Changing Face of Blacks in Comics,” which has been displayed at museums and libraries.

Professor Foster is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and holds a master’s degree from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut.