April 12 - 15, 2018
Cartoonist and critic Art Spiegelman argues that comics “turn time into space.” This session invites papers that examine or interrogate the ways comics and graphic novels use space to build narratives or imagine worlds. How might the formal elements of comics (such as panels, borders, and sequence) work to include or exclude? How might comics, such as Jeff Lemire’s Essex County or Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine De Landro’s Bitch Planet, depict recognizable, local landscapes or global (and extraterrestrial) dramas? Panelists are encouraged to explore this year’s conference theme by proposing papers that address graphic narratives and investigations of space, mobility, immigration, globalization, reproduction, borders, science fiction, or reportage.
Some questions to consider:
- How do comics as a medium (re)produce space?
- How do comics, a visual medium that structurally relies upon borders, imagine new worlds and new versions of our own?
- How can graphic narratives give access to spaces that are not available to all (for example, in Joe Sacco’s journalism or Tings Chak’s Undocumented: The Architecture of Migrant Detention)?
- How are comics used as a political tool, and what other political expressions might be possible?
- As Sara Ahmed insists, “Sexism makes it hard to speak about sexism. Racism makes it hard to speak about racism. The harder it is, the more creative we have to become. We wiggle about, we create room.” How do graphic narratives, such as G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona’s Ms. Marvel or Kate Evan’s Red Rosa, “create room” for underrepresented voices and how might that room make space for resistance?
Chair: Anna Christine (Tufts University), Joanna McQuade (Tufts University)
Submit abstract to NeMLA web site https://www.cfplist.com/nemla/Home/S/16970 by September 30, 2017 deadline. To submit, you will need a free NeMLA CFP List account at https://www.cfplist.com/nemla/Home/CFP.