CFP: The Comics of Hergé / essay collection (Jan. 1, 2014)
The Comics of Hergé is a proposed volume in a new book series, Critical Approaches to Comics Artists, at the University Press of Mississippi. This volume will contain 12-16 new critical essays on Hergé, ranging from his work in advertising, illustrations for others' writings, and comics to film and television adaptations of his work. Essays from many disciplinary perspectives are welcome, including critical approaches from comics studies, art history, cultural studies, religious and ethical studies, literary studies, linguistics, history, political science, gender theory, postcolonial studies, and adaptation theory.
Essays (in English) might address the following questions:
- What important connections can be made between Hergé's non-comics work—for example, his illustrations for Léon Degrelle and his work in advertising—and the work for which he became famous?
- Although analysis of Hergé's work has focused almost exclusively on Tintin, how would our understanding of his masterpiece benefit from better attention to his lesser-known comics? How has the previous focus on Tintin denied important insights on these works?
- How did Hergé's growing interest in modern art change the work he did in comics?
- How has Hergé's ligne claire influenced or been challenged by subsequent artists, including those with whom he worked over his long career?
- How do Hergé's ideas of eastern religions come through in his interviews and/or art? To what extent were these ideas accurate, and how do those ideas illuminate other aspects of his life and art?
- To what extent does Tintin's nationality, increasingly obscured over the course of the series, matter? To what extent does his status as a citizen of Brussels signify in the ongoing internal tensions of Belgium?
- Some important comics creators—such as Edgar Jacobs and Jacques Van Melkebeke—benefitted from and have been overshadowed by Hergé. What new research can shed light on Hergé’s relationship with these creators and how that relationship affected comics?
- How does Hergé obscure sexual desire in his works, and where does it appear despite his efforts? Is there a difference between his treatment of desire in his works for different audiences?
- What other absences does Hergé enforce in his comics, and to what effect?
- Numa Sadoul’s book of interviews with Hergé—interviews Hergé edited before they saw print—remains pivotal to the study of Hergé long after its publication. What arguments, revisions, insights, expansions, or even corrections are now necessary?
- Other topics are also very welcome.