This Book Contains Graphic Language: Comics as Literature

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Bloomsbury Academic, Dec 15, 2007 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 248 pages
2 Reviews
This Book Contains Graphic Language looks at different literary forms and genres—including journalism, fiction, memoirs, and film—in relation to their comic book counterparts. By demonstrating the ways in which comic books (and graphic novels) both reflect upon, and expand the boundaries of literature, Rocco Versaci demonstrates that comics have earned the right to be taken just as seriously as any other literary form.
As comics and graphic novels become more popular than ever, literary critics are finding that they now have a new subject to examine. But while many advocates of the medium maintain that comics are a true art form, there have been no detailed comparisons among comics and "legitimate" types of literature. Filling this void, This Book Contains Graphic Language examines different literary forms in relation to their comic book counterparts. These literatures include prose memoir, Holocaust memoir, journalism, film, and-for lack of a better term-the "classics." Each richly-illustrated chapter outlines the key issues of one of these forms and then explores how comic books have been able to reflect and expand upon those issues in unique ways.

The comics discussed include Eightball by Daniel Clowes, Love and Rockets by Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez, American Splendor by Harvey Pekar, Maus by Art Spiegelman, Palestine by Joe Sacco, Frontline Combat and Two-Fisted Tales from EC Comics, Sandman by Neil Gaiman and League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Alan Moore.  By examining the ways in which these and other comic books and graphic novels expand the boundaries of literature, English professor Rocco Versaci demonstrates that the medium of comics has earned the right to be regarded as an important artistic and literary form.

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This book contains graphic language: comics as literature

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

This book initially seems to be an earnest attempt to justify comics (and graphic novels) as a sophisticated literary art form. But once Versaci (English, Palomar Community Coll., San Marcos, CA ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jtodd1973 - LibraryThing

Pretty disappointing, overall. Versaci makes some good points here and there, but for the most part, the book offers very little insight. Read full review


Why Comics?
Creating a Special Reality
ReMaustering the Past

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About the author (2007)

Rocco Versaci, PhD is Professor of English at Paolmar Community College in San Marcos, California, where he developed what is now one of the department's most popular classes: English 290 - Comic Books as Literature.

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