In April 2015, I was awarded $281,000 from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada to pursue a four-year big data project on the evolution of stylistics in the American comic book industry. "What Were Comics?", with co-investigators Nick Sousanis (Eyes High Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of English) and Benjamin Woo (Carleton University) will build a data set of a randomly selected two per cent of the comic books published in the United States between 1934 and 2014, coding them for various formal elements in order to produce a wholly novel means of reading the history of the American comic book through its "typical" products rather than through its "exceptional" ones.
In addition to this project, I am currently completing a monograph for Palgrave, with Ben Woo, tentatively titled Consecrating Comics, which examines the construction of notions of quality and legitimacy in the comics field. With Charles Hatfield I am co-editing the Cambridge Companion to Comics for Cambridge University Press, and I am editing the Cambridge History of Comics for that same press.
I am the author of six monographs: Fredric Wertham and the Critique of Mass Culture (2005), Canadian Television Today (with Rebecca Sullivan, 2006), Unpopular Culture: Transforming the European Comic Book in the 1990s (2007), David Cronenberg's A History of Violence (2008), Comics Versus Art (2012), and Twelve-Cent Archie (2015). Additionally, I am the editor of the seven volumves of the Critical Survey of Graphic Novels (2012), and co-editor of How Canadians Communicate: Contexts of Canadian Popular Culture (2010) and The French Comics Theory Reader (2014). As transalator, I have published three volumes: Thierry Groensteen's The System of Comics (2007), Jean-Paul Gabilliet's Of Comics and Men (2010), and Thierry Smolderen's The Origins of Comics (2014).
The portrait of Bart is by German cartoonist Martin tom Dieck, about whom Bart has written in The Comics Journal, Top Shelf Asks the Big Questions, and in his book: Unpopular Culture: Transforming the European Comic Book in the 1990s.