The Yellow Kid was a ubiquitous figure at the end of the nineteenth century. Originally created by Richard F. Outcault, the Kid first appeared as a character in the comic strip Hogan’s Alley. He was an immensely popular figure, and quickly migrated to other comic strips, as well as appearing on merchandise and various consumer products. As one of the first popular serial characters, the Yellow Kid was emblematic of an emerging consumer culture. In Producing Mass Entertainment: The Serial Life of the Yellow Kid (Ohio State UP, 2019), Christina Meyer uses the mobility of the Yellow Kid as a prism through which to explore a range of issues surrounding serialisation, cultural production and consumption, and authorship. Meyer’s book is an insightful, rigorously researched account of turn-of-the-century popular culture and the role of comic strips in that development of that culture.
Christina Meyer is Visiting Professor of American Studies at the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin. She is also the author of War and Trauma Images in Vietnam War Representations.
Miranda Corcoran is a lecturer in twenty-first-century literature in University College Cork. She is a regular contributor to Diabolique and blogs about popular culture here. You can follow her on Twitter @middleagedwitch