1001 Black Men #766: The Brothers of Comic-Con, 2014


This brother was my favorite costume at Comic-Con, hands down. He was a young, shirtless, Black Uncle Sam in American Flag Bermuda Shorts. I passed him strolling down the aisles of the Small Press section of the Exhibition Hall. I wish I’d taken a moment to ask him about whether or not he was dressed as a particular hero or character. I know there was an Uncle Sam comic book series back in the 1940s, and DC Comics’ the The New 52 (2011) seems to include an Uncle Sam character who is African American; but I don’t think this guy was dressed as either of these. I prefer to imagine that he was wearing his costume both ironically and as an act of reclamation, in the spirit of other outsiders (like Abbie Hoffman, Allen Ginsberg) who used the imagery of Uncle Sam to stake their claim as the most patriotic of all Americans, the dissenters.

Ajuan Mance



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *