Monitor: New Publications on Comic Books



Joachim Kalka
100 pages
ISBN 978-3-15-020448-1 (Paperback)
~€ 10,00
September 2017

Publisher’s page
Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus mit seiner Decke, Schroeder am Klavier und natürlich der Tagträumer Snoopy: Was fasziniert uns eigentlich so an diesen Kindern (und dem Hund) mit ihren Spielen und Ritualen, die doch im Grunde nichts Besonderes erleben? Joachim Kalka zieht die Schmusedecke weg von diesem daily strip, einem der bedeutendsten der Nachkriegs-USA. Er zeigt, welche Strömungen der amerikanischen Gesellschaft, etwa der Hype der Psychiatrie, wie Literatur, Filme und Mode sich in den Peanuts spiegeln, und inwieweit ihr Autor, Charles M. Schulz, sich in seinem Comic selbst verewigt hat.

Text + Kritik Sonderband:  Graphic Novels

Text + Kritik Sonderband: Graphic Novels

Andreas C. Knigge (ed.)
edition text+kritik
330 pages
ISBN 978-3-86916-615-5 (Paperback)
~€ 39,00
October 2017

Publisher’s page
Als “Graphic Novel” hat der Comic das Interesse der Feuilletons gefunden – doch was meint der Begriff? Ist er ein Marketing-Label oder handelt es sich um eine neue literarische Gattung? Lange galt der Comic als trivialer Bestandteil der Jugendkultur – und er war es in der Regel auch, da durch Jugendschutzgesetze jeder Möglichkeit erzählerischer und künstlerischer Entwicklung beraubt. In den 1960er Jahren, im Klima des Summer of Love, der Pop-Art und der Nouvelle Vague, wurde er neu entdeckt. In mehreren Werkporträts verfolgt der Band die unterschiedlichen Ansätze und Motivationen von Künstlern wie Will Eisner, Hugo Pratt, Robert Crumb oder Jacques Tardi, den Comic als eine grafische Literatur zu begreifen und zu nutzen. Weitere Beiträge widmen sich u. a. den Zeichnern und Autoren im deutschen Sprachraum, der Poetik autobiografischer “Graphic Novels”, Superhelden im Zwiespalt, Fundamentalismus und Blasphemie, Erzählformen des Mangas sowie den Bildromanen Frans Masereels. Nach dem Sonderband “Comics, Mangas, Graphic Novels” (edition text + kritik, 2009) erscheint nun das zweite, erweiterte und überarbeitete Heft mit Ergänzungen durch neue, die jüngsten Entwicklungen analysierende Beiträge.

Superman in Myth and Folklore

Superman in Myth and Folklore

Daniel Peretti
university Press of Mississippi
208 pages
ISBN 978-1-4968-1458-6 (Hardcover)
~$ 65,00
October 2017

Publisher’s page
Superman rose from popular culture –comic books, newspaper strips, radio, television, novels, and movies– but people have so embraced the character that he has now become part of folklore. This transition from popular to folk culture signals the importance of Superman to fans and to a larger American populace. Superman’s story has become a myth dramatizing identity, morality, and politics. Through examinations of tattoos, humor, costuming, and festivals, Peretti portrays Superman as a corporate-owned intellectual property and a model for behavior, a means for expression and performance of individual identity, and the focal point for disparate members of fan communities. As fans apply Superman stories to their lives, they elevate him to a mythical status. Peretti focuses on the way these fans have internalized various aspects of the character. In doing so, he delves into the meaning of Superman and his place in American culture and demonstrates the character’s staying power.

Ethics in the Gutter

Ethics in the Gutter:
Empathy and Historical Fiction in Comics

Kate Polak
Ohio State University Press
272 pages
ISBN 978-0-8142-5445-5 (Paperback)
~$ 29,95
October 2017

Publisher’s page
Ethics in the Gutter: Empathy and Historical Fiction in Comics explores an often-overlooked genre of graphic narratives: those that fictionalize historical realities. While autographics, particularly those that place the memoirist in the context of larger cultural conversations, have been the objects of sustained study, fictional graphic narratives that—as Linda Hutcheon has put it—both “enshrine and question” history are also an important area of study. By bringing narratology and psychological theory to bear on a range of graphic narratives, Kate Polak seeks to question how the form utilizes point of view and the gutter as ethical tools that shape the reader’s empathetic reactions to the content. This book’s most important questions surround how we receive and interpret representations of history, considering the ways in which what we think we know about historical atrocities can be at odds with the convoluted circumstances surrounding violence. Beginning with a new look at Watchmen, and including examinations of such popular series as Scalped and Hellblazer as well as Bayou and Deogratias, the book questions how graphic narratives create an alternative route by which to understand large-scale violence. Ethics in the Gutter explores how graphic narrative representations of violence can teach readers about the possibilities and limitations of empathy and ethics.

Arrow and Superhero Television

Arrow and Superhero Television:
Essays on Themes and Characters of the Series

James F. Iaccino, Cory Barker, and Myc Wiatrowski (eds.)
243 pages
ISBN 978-0-7864-9787-4 (Paperback)
~$ 19,99
November 2017

Publisher’s page
This collection of new essays focuses on The CW network’s hit television series Arrow—based on DC Comic’s Green Arrow—and its spin-offs The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl. Comic book adaptations have been big business for film studios since Superman (1978) and in recent years have dominated at the box office—five of the 11 highest grossing films of 2016 were adapted from comics. Superheroes have battled across the small screen for considerably longer, beginning with The Adventures of Superman (1952–1958), though with mixed results. The contributors explore the reasons behind Arrow’s success, its representation of bodies, its portrayal of women, its shifting political ideologies, and audience reception and influence on storylines.

The Canadian Alternative

The Canadian Alternative:
Cartoonists, Comics, and Graphic Novels

Dominick Grace and Eric Hoffman (eds.)
University Press of Mississippi
304 pages
ISBN 978-1-4968-1511-8 (Hardcover)
~$ 65,00
November 2017

Publisher’s page
This overview of the history of Canadian comics explores acclaimed as well as unfamiliar artists. Contributors look at the myriad ways that English-language, Francophone, indigenous, and queer Canadian comics and cartoonists pose alternatives to American comics, to dominant perceptions, even to gender and racial categories. In contrast to the United States’ melting pot, Canada has been understood to comprise a social, cultural, and ethnic mosaic, with distinct cultural variation as part of its identity. This volume reveals differences that often reflect in highly regional and localized comics such as Paul MacKinnon’s Cape Breton-specific Old Trout Funnies, Michel Rabagliati’s Montreal-based Paul comics, and Kurt Martell and Christopher Merkley’s Thunder Bay-specific zombie apocalypse. The collection also considers some of the conventionally “alternative” cartoonists, namely Seth, Dave Sim, and Chester Brown. It offers alternate views of the diverse and engaging work of two very different Canadian cartoonists who bring their own alternatives into play: Jeff Lemire in his bridging of Canadian/ US and mainstream/alternative sensibilities and Nina Bunjevac in her own blending of realism and fantasy as well as of insider/ outsider status. Despite an upsurge in research on Canadian comics, there is still remarkably little written about most major and all minor Canadian cartoonists. This volume provides insight into some of the lesser-known Canadian alternatives still awaiting full exploration.

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