The Graphic Novel|
Summer 2018 not offered
Since the groundbreaking publication of Art Spiegelman's MAUS in 1993, "graphic novels" have entered the global cultural mainstream. A truly multicultural genre, comics created by men and women around the world now appear in U.S. high school and college curricula, hold the attention of academic critics, and earn big box-office returns in cinematic adaptations. Though dubbed graphic novels by publishers to signal their high-culture aspirations and achievement, outstanding examples of the contemporary book-length comic actually appear in many literary genres. In this course we will survey the current field and read works of fiction (such as THE WATCHMEN and JIMMY CORRIGAN), autobiography (MAUS, PERSEPOLIS, FUN HOME, and 100 DEMONS), journalism (PALESTINE and SAFE AREA GORAZDE), and what we might call "comic theory" (UNDERSTANDING COMICS). And just as comics have become a global medium, they are perhaps inherently postmodern. Many contemporary comics are self-conscious about questions of form and theories of representation, a characteristic that will help us formulate new versions of the questions often considered in literary study. How do words and pictures drawn together in sequential narratives tell stories? What different skills are needed to comprehend this complex play of image, language, and time? What can graphic books do that other books cannot, and what are the constraints that shape this form?
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Seminar||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (ENGL)(ENGL-Amer Lit)(ENGL-TLF Conc)
Moore and Dave Gibbons, WATCHMEN
Scott McCloud, UNDERSTANDING COMICS
Art Spiegelman, MAUS I & II
Joe Sacco, PALESTINE
Marjane Satrapi, PERSEPOLIS I AND II
Alison Bechdel, FUN HOME
Lynda Barry, 100 DEMONS
Chris Ware, JIMMY CORRIGAN
Paul Karasik, ASTERIOS POLYP
Guy Delisle, SHENZEN: A TRAVELOGUE FROM CHINA
Howard Cruse, STUCK RUBBER BABY
Jessica Abel, LA PERDIDA
Will Eisner, THE BEST OF THE SPIRIT
|Examination and Assignments: |
Assignments for this class will include short reading responses on our class website, two shorter close readings, a 7-page critical essay, and the creation of a brief comic that engages some of the themes encountered in the readings: the connections between private and public history, the experience of the self in the contemporary world, the politics of state power and local resistance, and perhaps even the eternal battle between good and evil.
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
This course fulfills the Literatures of Difference major requirement and contributes to the fulfillment of the American Literature and Theory & Literary Forms concentration requirements.