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Fowler (Robert) underground comics collection
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Content Description
  • Preferred Citation
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Conditions Governing Access

  • Language of Material: English
    Contributing Institution: Department of Special Collections and University Archives
    Title: Robert Fowler underground comics collection
    source: Fowler, Robert
    Identifier/Call Number: M2090
    Physical Description: 65 Linear Feet (127 boxes)
    Date (inclusive): 1968-2010
    Date (bulk): 1970s-1990s
    Abstract: Thousands of underground comics (aka comix), assembled by collector Robert Fowler.
    Physical Location: Special Collections and University Archives materials are stored offsite and must be paged 36 hours in advance.

    Content Description

    Collection consists of approximately 4000 underground comic books (also known as "comix"), mostly from the 1970s through the 1990s. Represented in the collection are thousands of authors. Roughly two-thirds of the collection is single issue comics, with the other third made up of multi-issue series. Topics and genres reflected include politics, sexuality, hippies, drugs, fantasy, erotica, and science fiction. Some might also be classified as graphic novels. Some are reprints, others are signed copies, and a few are annotated lightly with notes and corrections. Most are in very good condition. Publishers include Rip Off Press, Print Mint, Last Gasp, Fantagraphics, Kitchen Sink, and Drawn & Quarterly, as well as many others, including self-published works and many obscure titles from Great Britain.
    What follows is a very basic listing of titles, numbers, and dates. More specific information about holdings within the Fowler collection can be found in his listings available here: https://purl.stanford.edu/wz738tf7419. With some exceptions, issues are sorted according to his alphabetical scheme. Some series are grouped together despite varying issue titles, while others were filed according to issue title. Additionally, some titles were filed by most distinctive title element (i.e. skipping "Tales of..." or "Adventures of...").

    Preferred Citation

    [identification of item], Robert Fowler underground comics collection (M2090). Dept. of Special Collections and University Archives, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, Calif.

    Conditions Governing Use

    While Special Collections is the owner of the physical items, permission to examine collection materials is not an authorization to publish. These materials are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study. Any transmission or reproduction beyond that allowed by fair use requires permission from the owners of rights, heir(s) or assigns. See: http://library.stanford.edu/spc/using-collections/permission-publish

    Biographical / Historical

    Robert Fowler grew up in Los Altos, California and began collecting comics while at the Claremont Colleges (1966-1970), beginning with Zap Comix and the Young Lust series. Fowler started keeping a database of his comics collection between 1977-1980 while working as a computer programmer at Byte Shop #12 in Pasadena. He collected most of his comics between 1980 and 1998, though he continued to collect until 2014.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Robert Fowler, 2014.

    Conditions Governing Access

    Open for research. Note that material must be requested at least 36 hours in advance of intended use.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Comic books, strips, etc. -- Periodicals.
    Underground comic books, strips, etc.
    Fowler, Robert