August 6, 2020 @ 5:08 am - posted by Aleksey

Regular readers for this blog may have wondered why, after 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, there was clearly no blogpost regarding the 2016 ComFor (German Society for Comics Studies) seminar. There was a straightforward reason behind that: we hadn’t attended year’s conference that is last. Fourteen days ago, nonetheless, we took the journey to Bonn where this year’s meeting (topic: “Comics and their Popularity”) happened. Please be aware that the next records aren’t designed to adequately summarise the conference that is respective; alternatively they’re rather subjective and random – thus the name with this blogpost.

The meeting began on Friday, December 1 utilizing the Workshops” that is“Open.e. Documents not in the seminar theme of “Comics and their Popularity”.

  • The very first presentation had been by Zita Husing (Bonn) on “Being and Nature: the importance associated with the Southern Space associated with the Swamp in Alan Moore’s The Saga of this Swamp Thing” for which she submit connections between tropes associated with United states South and Swamp Thing, e.g. That both are difficult to kill – no matter what defectively they have been maimed or burned down, they constantly keep coming back through the dead. Like was remarked when you look at the conversation a while later, nevertheless, it is interesting how article writers after Moore, such as for example Jeff Lemire, have actually expanded Swamp Thing’s backstory as a cosmology that shifts the main focus through the neighborhood towards the international.
  • When you look at the paper that is second “Batwing, Batflugel oder Flugel-Bat. Die onimischen Einheiten im Comic” (“onimic devices in comics” – all translations mine), Rafal Jakiel (Wroclaw) looked over the names (poetonyms) of figures in superhero comics and identified traits such as for example their simple iconicity: for example, Killer Croc is just a murderous guy whom seems like a crocodile.
  • Daniela Kaufmann (Graz) then introduced “A Study in grayscale. Zur Signifikanz der Farben Schwarz und Wei? im Comic” (“on the value associated with tints white and black in comics”). Beginning with Kazimir Malevich’s Ebony Square – showcased e.g. In Nicolas Mahler’s comic Lulu und das Schwarze Quadrat – she proceeded to Krazy Kat therefore the racial ambiguity of both its creator George Herriman as well as its eponymous protagonist.
  • This is accompanied by Elisabeth Krieber‘s (Salzburg) paper on “Subversive feminine shows in artistic Media – Phoebe Gloeckner’s and Alison Bechdel’s Graphic Narratives” which additionally considered the adaptation that is musical of Residence additionally the movie adaptation of Diary of the Teenage woman.

Regrettably we missed the second two speaks by Karoline M. Pohl and Sakshi Wason, correspondingly, who shut the “Open Workshops” section after which it the documents in the “Popularity” theme began.

  • The next presentation we attended ended up being by Veronique Sina (Cologne / Tubingen) on “Comickeit is Judischkeit. Uber das diskursive Zusammenspiel von Comic, Popularkultur und judischer Identitat” (“on the discursive interplay of comics, popular tradition, and Jewish identity”). Her examples that are main the comics of Aline Kominsky-Crumb and Harvey Pekar, and she additionally talked about Jonas Engelmann’s theory of popular tradition once the dissolution of identification.
  • Pnina Rosenberg (Haifa) mentioned “Mickey au camp de Gurs: governmental critique and automobile censorship in comics done throughout the Holocaust”, by which she provided three image publications produced by Hans Rosenthal during their internment at a concentration camp in 1942.
  • The keynote that is first of meeting was presented with by Julia Round (Bournemouth), en titled “Canon or popular? Sandman, Aesthetics, Intertextuality and Literariness”. She talked about the ongoing battle about the status of comics as a whole and Sandman in specific as literary works (also: high vs. Low art, “graphic novels” vs. Comic publications), exactly exactly how this is certainly afflicted with the intimate writer idea around Neil Gaiman (“Mr Gaiman could be the Sandman” – Clive Barker), and exactly how this discourse comes towards the fore in fan talks at

Saturday, December 2:

  • In his talk on “Batmans queere Popularitat. Ein comicwissenschaftlicher und kulturhistorischer Annaherungsversuch” (“Batman’s queer popularity. A method through the viewpoint of comics studies and history” that is cultural, Daniel Stein (Siegen) talked about how Batman is appropriated as homosexual by some visitors, while some are gripped by ‘queer anxiety’, i.e. The fear that their beloved character might formally be homosexual.
  • Laura Antola‘s (Turku) paper “Marvel’s Comics in Finland: Translation, ‘Mail-Man’ plus the interest in superheroes” portrayed the eccentric figure of ‘Mail-Man’, a real-life translator and editor whom additionally responded fan mail within the page pages of Finnish Marvel comics from 1980 forward.
  • “Das Popula(e)re und das Signifikante. Der Comic als Antwort auf die Krise liberaler Erzahlungen? ” (“The popular plus the significant. Comics as a remedy into the crisis of liberal narratives? ”) by Mario Zehe (Leipzig) talked about Economix by Goodwin/Burr, Le Singe de Hartlepool by Lupano/Moreau, and fortunate Luke: Los Angeles Terre vow by Jul/Achde as types of comics that reveal the restrictions of cosmopolitanism.
  • Stephan Packard (Cologne) mentioned “President Lex Luthor, Wakanda und der osteuropaische Schwarzwald. Zur popularen Ideologie der Fiktionalitat in Comics” (“President Lex Luthor, Wakanda as well as the Eastern European Black Forest. Regarding the popular ideology of fictionality in comics”) additionally the connection that is sometimes problematic fictional things and their real-world counterparts. A striking instance is the current “Alien Nation” tale from Captain Marvel vol. 1 (2017) that will be partly set into the “Black Forest”, albeit A black colored woodland that does not look such a thing such as the genuine one out of Southern Western Germany and it is situated, in accordance with a caption, in “Eastern Europe”. Packard unfolded a tight framework that is theoretical included the types of fiction concept talked about by Marie-Laure Ryan for instance the ‘principle of minimal departure’, but also Theodor Adorno’s ‘categorical imperative for the tradition industry’, amongst others.

Lecture hallway IX at Bonn University during David Turgay’s talk. Photograph by Ronny Bittner

The paper that is next David Turgay‘s (Landau) extremely interesting “Das alternate im Popularen: Eine korpusgestutzte Analyse von Mainstream-Comics” (“the alternative into the popular: a corpus-based analysis of mainstream comics”) in which he examined the panels of 150 US comic publications from 1996 and from 2016 pertaining to six requirements: politics / social critique, narrative peculiarities, creative peculiarities, metafictional elements, absence of fighting, and lack of text. The outcomes associated with analysis revealed an increase that is significant of requirements in the long run, but general these traits (which David Turgay interpreted once the impact of separate comics) nevertheless took place less frequently in 2016 than anticipated.

  • In the presentation on “Der Fluch der Graphic Novel aus (hochschul)didaktischer Sicht” (“the curse of this visual novel through the perspective of (tertiary) education”), Markus Oppolzer (Salzburg) talked about the dreaded g-word once again, but he additionally talked about Conan the Librarian through the movie UHF – as being a librarian myself, we can’t think I experienced never ever heard about him before!
  • Dietrich Grunewald (Reiskirchen) talked about “Grenzganger. Comics Bildende that is und Kunst (“border crossers. Comics and fine art”) and just how artwork such as for example paintings are utilized in comics, e.g. As background details in Volker Reiche’s Strizz.
  • Christian A. Bachmann‘s (Bochum) share ended up being possibly the one with all the title that is longest: “Slippers and music have become various things, oder: von high key to low key. Zur Darstellung popularer Musik in Bildergeschichten diverses 19. Und Comics des fruhen 20. Jahrhunderts” (“from high key to low key. Regarding the depiction of popular music in photo tales for the nineteenth and comics for the early twentieth century”). Among their examples had been Billy DeBeck’s Barney Bing and Richard F. Outcault’s Buster Brown.
  • Kirsten von Hagen (Gie?en) introduced a paper on “Tintin und die Recherche: Von der ‘ligne claire’ Herges zu den synasthetischen Traumsequenzen bei Heuet” (“Tintin while the recherche: from Herge’s ‘ligne claire’ to Heuet’s synesthetic fantasy sequences”). Stephane Heuet adapted Marcel Proust’s looking for Lost Time as a number of comic volumes utilizing a ligne claire design.
  • Martin Lund (Vaxjo / brand brand New York) offered the keynote that is second “Jack T. Chick, a well known Propagandist”. With more than 260 ‘Chick tracts’ since 1961 of which an approximated 900 million copies have now been distributed, Chick could have been “the most commonly distributed comics creator in the field” (Darby Orcutt 2010 – but see also https: //en. Chick’s comics certainly are a wellspring of real information on subjects such as for instance development, abortion and weather modification; as an example, are you aware that warming that is“global pray to Ixchel“, the Mayan “goddess for the moon and creativity”? But really: based on Martin Lund, the Chick tracts had been never ever designed to convert unbelievers to Chick’s twisted philosophy, but instead to reassure the individuals whom currently had been on their part.
  • Sunday, December 3:

    • Michael Wetzel‘s (Bonn) paper ended up being en en en titled Auteurism‘ that is“‘Graphic Kreativitat und Copyright im Comic” (“On creativity and copyright in comics”). An appealing theory ended up being that the favorite notion of a ‘Romanticist idea of authorship’ is flawed because Romanticist writers such as for instance E. T. A. Hoffmann actually deconstructed authorship.

    Leave a Reply