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University of Oregon

Ben Saunders

Professor Ben Saunders’ DUKtalk on the Birth of the Superhero!

(DUKTalks) is a showcase for faculty who represent the best of the University of Oregon College of Arts and Sciences—as demonstrated by their exploration of unexpected directions in their teaching and research.

Ben Saunders, Professor of English at the University of Oregon, specializes in two fields: the literature of the English Renaissance; and the history of British and American comics and cartoons. His first book, Desiring Donne, explored the intersection of spirituality and sexuality in the poetry of John Donne alongside larger questions of literary theory and hermeneutics. Shortlisted by Choice magazine as one of the outstanding academic titles of 2006, Desiring Donne was also nominated as a Finalist for the Oregon Book Award that same year. His second book, Do The Gods Wear Capes?, focused on modern American superhero comics, arguing that the superhero fantasy can tell us a great deal about our conceptions of the human, the post-human, and the divine Ben Saunders’ Profile).