Susan Signe Morrison

FICTION AND HISTORICAL BOOKS

HISTORY FOR HIGH SCHOOL, COLLEGE, AND GENERAL AUDIENCES
Gold Medal Winner in College Nonfiction by Literary Classics; Bronze Medal Winner for the 2016 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award in Women's Studies; Honorable Mention in Adult Nonfiction and Young Adult Nonfiction. This book, filled with images, tells the stories of the virtuous virgins, marvelous maidens, and fierce feminists of the Middle Ages who trail-blazed paths for women today. Ideal for high school and college classroom use in courses ranging from history and literature to women's and gender studies.
FICTION
Winner: Words on Wings Book Award for young adult fiction, a Literary Classics Top Honors Award 2016. The story of Beowulf from the point of view of the women. The story of Beowulf from the point of view of the women. Finalist for the 2016 Wishing Shelf Book Award in the category of Adult Fiction; Finalist for the 2014-2015 Sarton Literary Award for Historical Fiction; and Finalist for Foreward Reviews' 2015 Indiefab Book of the Year Award: Historical (Adult Fiction). Recipient of Literary Classics Seal of Approval.
FOR SCHOLARS OF LITERATURE AND THEORY
New Materialist approach to comparative literature focusing on waste--garbage, trash, and detritus--and its metaphorical and ethical impact.
Why does excrement appear so frequently in medieval literature, especially the works by Geoffrey Chaucer? Do you dare to find out?
YOUNG ADULT NON-FICTION
The actual diaries of a teenage girl living in Chicago just before World War II and as the war begins. Named by the Children's Book Committee of the Bank Street College of Education to the Best Children's Book of the Year 2013 list (Memoir: Ages 14 & up).
SCHOLARLY HISTORY
The first book to ever focus on medieval women pilgrims--in history, in literature, and in art.

Susan's Blog

Grendel’s Mother in Fascist Italy: Beowulf in a Catholic Youth Publication

August 20, 2018

I’m delighted that my article “Grendel’s Mother in Fascist Italy: Beowulf in a Catholic Youth Publication,” has just been published in the International Journal of Comic Art. This essay focuses on a 1940-41 Italian comic book version by Enrico Basari (author) and Kurt Caesar (illustrator). An anti-semitic portrayal of Grendel’s Mother grows out of German views of Beowulf in the 1930s. The anti-semitic overtones present in German Beowulf youth translations and adaptations sympathetic to Nazi German propaganda, produced in the decade before and simultaneously with the publication of the comic under scrutiny here, likewise crop up under the Italian fascist reign. The fraught nature of Grendel’s Mother takes on insidious dimensions in Enrico Basari’s Beowulf. Leggenda cristiana dell’antica Danimarca, appearing in serial form from Oct. 5, 1940-Jan. 25, 1941. It was featured in Il Vittorioso, a Catholic youth publication, “a nationalist publication often distributed through Catholic parishes” (Calderón, 2007:112), that attempted to go beyond mere Fascist propaganda for young people. Just how could an anti-semitic inflected Beowulf comic have affected youth readers?