The Globalization of Comic-Con and the Sacralization of Popular Culture

  • Michael A. Elliott
Part of the Leisure Studies in a Global Era book series (LSGE)


In 1970, the Golden State Comic-Con was held in San Diego, California, with about 300 people in attendance. At the time, it was a relatively small convention of writers, artists and enthusiasts of comic books as well as science fiction and fantasy. Today, Comic-Con International: San Diego (as it is now called) is attended by over 130,000 people every July and is widely known as the premiere convention for fans celebrating comics and related popular arts. This chapter seeks to explore why Comic-Con has become such a popular event, particularly for fans, and why it has globalized in recent years. The chapter proposes a Durkheimian hypothesis: Comic-Con is a sacred ritual for devout fans, and it has globalized because key aspects of this event (e.g., the superhero) represent mythical archetypes that transcend national boundaries.


Comic-con Fandom Superheroes Popular culture Durkheim Leisure 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael A. Elliott
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal JusticeTowson UniversityTowsonUSA

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