Friday, October 17, 2008

CFP: Show and Tell: What Do Graphic Novels Want? And How Do They Speak? (ACLA; Deadline Nov. 15)

Show and Tell: What Do Graphic Novels Want? And How Do They Speak?
Seminar Organizer: Nhora L Serrano, Cal State Long Beach
American Comparative Literature Association's 2009 Annual Meeting
Harvard University, March 26-29, 2009
Deadline for Paper Proposals:
November 1, 2008

Pictographs, hieroglyphics, the cave drawings of Lascaux, the Bayeux tapestry, illuminated medieval manuscripts, the sequential words and pictures of William Hogarth and Aubrey Beardsley, the explosion of cheaply printed and widely distributed "funny papers" of late nineteenth and early twentieth century American newspapers, the "Golden Age" of American comics, which saw the birth of Superman and Batman, and the genre comics of the "50s" -- all of these wide-ranging cultural artifacts have contributed to the rise of the contemporary graphic novel. Too often, this important literary genre has been dismissed as "kid's stuff," but graphic novels are as complex and powerful as any other art form.

Drawing from the work of Visual Culture studies experts, in particular W.J.T. Mitchell's works on text and image, this seminar panel aims to undertake the task of understanding and analyzing this multifaceted art form. All papers addressing the various aspects of the fraught and complex relationship between text and image in contemporary graphic novels are welcomed.

Submit paper online by November 1, 2008:

For questions, contact Nhora Lucia Serrano, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature, Dept. of Comparative World Literature & Classics, California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA 90840 (nserrano @

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