Atrocity and War in the Graphic Novel
Why has the graphic novel (or, more accurately, the graphic memoir or "comix journalism") become such a prominent international medium for narratives of atrocity and war? Is there something about the medium of the graphic novel that befits such subject matter, and such international reach? This course will address these questions by looking closely at recent graphic novels from several sites around the world. We will pay attention to formal techniques, narrative structures, and the production and reception contexts for these graphic texts. Possible course texts include Keiji Nakazawa's Barefoot Gen: A Cartoon Story of Hiroshima, Art Spiegelman's Maus, Joe Sacco's Palestine and/or Safe Area Goradze, and Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis. This course is best suited for students who are confident in their ability to critically read and write about literary texts. Prerequisite: A course in literature, media studies, cultural studies, or visual art.