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COLT 370 - Comparative Comics

CRN: 40657

Instructor: Tera Reid-Olds

Term: Summer 2017

Mediterranean Crossroads

The Mediterranean is a site of exchange between three different continents. How do individuals from North Africa, West Asia, and Southern Europe navigate questions of national and regional identity at these geographic crossroads? We will explore the way that graphic narrative Рas a genre of crossroads Рconstructs Mediterranean identity and the impact of visual media on present-day regional conflicts. We often think of comics in terms of American popular culture, but in this course we will examine Italian, Egyptian, and Greek traditions among others as we investigate how visual culture shapes the Mediterranean world. Beyond studying the engagement of comics with stereotypes and representations of violence, we will also grapple with the role of translation in these texts. Our discussions will stem from a foundation in comics theory as we compare a variety of graphic narratives Рfrom horror to political thriller, adventure to coming-of-age stories against a backdrop of social unrest and war Рin order to better understand the unique capacity of comics to illustrate and complicate the tension between national and regional identities in the Mediterranean today.

Satisfies General Education Requirements:

  • Group-Satisfying: Arts and Letters
  • Multicultural Courses: Identity, Pluralism, and Tolerance (IP)