Show Me Where It Hurts: Part 2

In this second part of my survey of the growing field of graphic medicine, I review four recent nonfiction books about health, illness, recovery and loss. These books vary in many respects—in their ...

Show Me Where It Hurts: Part 1

Illness, mental and physical, is arguably comics’ invisible master theme, deeply woven into their genome and shaping the stories they tell, from the earliest newspaper strips (chronic allergies in ...

Invasion of the Funny Animals

“Funny Animals” is a genre of comics that is, like most things in comics, inappropriately named. Just as “comics” are quite often not comic and “graphic novels” are rarely novels, “funny ...

Otherworlds

In the history of modern comics—as in the history of comic’s cousin, film—there have long been two competing impulses. Film history contrasts the styles of two pioneers: the documentary realism of ...

Edible Comics

Comics and food have a longstanding relationship, most spectacularly in a unique genre known in Japan, its country of origin, as ryôri manga, or cooking comics. These are comics entirely devoted to ...

Origin Stories

There are many mornings when I cannot help but express my gratitude that I did not come of age in this current generation. As a father of two Millennials and a teacher of hundreds more, I know that ...

Polish Dreams

I often joke that everything I know about Israel I learned from comic books. As a secular Jew with deep ambivalence about Israel, this quip has served as a shield against being engaged on the topic ...

Cassandra, Retiring

I spent a good portion of 2010 playing the Cassandra, mongering doom and gloom about the heat death of the alternative comics universe.1 Despite some important works—chief among them James Sturm’s ...

Building Stories: The Missing Manual

If there is a comics geek in your life (or if you happened recently to mention to family or friends a passing interest in “graphic novels”), this holiday season you are likely to find yourself the ...

Graphic Fables of Old New York

Two recent books serve as potent reminders of the ongoing historiographic obsessions of graphic narrative. Leela Corman’s Unterzakhn and Mark Siegel’s Sailor Twain are both ambitious historical ...

Comics Journalism, Comics Activism

It has been a good fifteen years now since our cultural gatekeepers collectively patted themselves on the back for having discovered that comics were “not just for kids anymore,” and in that time ...