4390: Reading Images [&] Seeing Words:
Comics and Visual Literature
Prof. Gene Kannenberg, Jr.
UHD, Fall 2003 - CRN 11631
[Preliminary course description - syllabus to follow
- See Book
In this course we will study the art form known as comics;
our critical lens will come from text/image studies. While the comics
readings for this course will cover a historical range, this is not primarily
a course in or about comics history; rather, we will focus on formal,
interpretive, and analytical issues.
Primary readings in comics (strips, books, and graphic novels; mostly
fiction, but some non-fiction, as well) will be supplemented by critical
readings, first in comics-specific discourse (most prominently, Scott
McCloud’s Understanding Comics), followed, more extensively, by broader
investigations of text/image questions (Roland Barthes, Michael Camille,
Johanna Drucker, W.J.T. Mitchell, etc.). Reserve materials in other
text/image forms (some from our library, some from my personal collection)
will supplement our readings and allow us to draw comparisons between
comics and other forms of visual literature.
When students leave the class, they will have a refined appreciation for
the comics art form, as well as a set of critical approaches to help them
analyze other forms of visual communication, including:
- Artists’ books
- Concrete poetry
- Book Design
- Children’s Picture
- Print Design
- Web design
- Icons and non-textual
Our class will use the following comics texts. As you may already
be aware, comics can be expensive; I've tried my best to keep the costs
down while covering a useful range of material. One way to reduce
your costs is to look for used or discounted versions of these books.
Some will be hard to find, others will be very easy to find, however.
Amazon.com offers some of our texts at significant discounts (like
Maus); I've included direct links to Amazon.com's information on some
of the books below. (If you bought all of the books through Amazon
that you could, you'd save about $35!) I also urge you to visit
Half Price Books stores and other used book stores; I can't guarantee
that you will find our books there, but chances are good at least one
or two may be waiting for you. You might also want to look at some
of the larger comic book shops in the area, like Bedrock City . There will also
be a course packet or reserve readings - details to follow...
- Barry, Lynda.
The! Greatest! of! Marlyss! Sasquatch Books.
Amazon.com: $11.17 )
Gilbert. Love & Rockets vol. 8: Blood of Palomar.
Fantagraphics. $18.95. (
Amazon.com: $13.27 )
- McCloud, Scott.
Understanding Comics. $23. (
Amazon.com: $16.07 )
- Moore, Alan
and Eddie Campbell. The Birth Caul. Eddie Campbell
Comics/Top Shelf Comics. $5.95
- Moore, Alan
and Dave Gibbons. Watchmen. DC Comics/Warner
Books. $19.95. (
Amazon.com: $13.97 )
Chris, ed. Drawn and Quarterly vol. 2 no.1.
Posy. Gemma Bovery. Jonathan Cape. Approx.
$15. (Note: this book is out of print in the US, but I am having
copies shipped over from the UK; they will be available in class at
my cost, approx. $15 each. You *might* be able to find copies
here, but it's very doubtful - UHD's bookstore will not have copies.)
Art. Maus I & Maus II. Pantheon. $14
Amazon.com: $19.60 for both books! )
- Ware, Chris.
Quimby the Mouse (paperback). Fantagraphics.
Amazon.com: $10.47 ) (Note: this book will be published in August,
so it is not in stores yet. Amazon.com allows you to pre-order
the book, and it will be shipped when it it published.)
posted 12 June 2003; Last modified 13 July 2003