This article examines the image of the First World War in British political cartoons, from the aftermath of the conflict to the present day, as an active process of remembrance. Through an analysis of cartoons in newspapers and periodicals in Britain, this study assesses how a distinct vision of the war is formed within society as a means of addressing contemporary concerns beyond the events of 1914–1918. The use of such war imagery in television, film and fiction has been recently critiqued by scholars who have lamented the way in which this popular memory obscures the history of the conflict. However, a study of political cartoons reveals that rather than constituting a cliché, specific representations of the war, namely the image of the battlefields, the trenches and suffering soldiers, acquire new meanings and constitute a dynamic process of remembrance which uses the past to critique and assess the present.
Political Cartoons and the Memory of the First World War in Britain
Ross J. Wilson
Creating Muslims in a Danish Setting
This article offers a situational analysis of the printing of cartoons about the Islamic Prophet in a Danish newspaper in 2005 and the ensuing demonstration by Danish Muslims. It suggests that rather than simply sparking protests, the 'cartoon controversy' created a space for possible actions and a political platform for Muslims all over the world. Based on a review of the historical development of the national Danish discourse on immigrants, the article conveys how the cartoon controversy became instrumental in transforming this discourse. As a major creative event, it not only ridiculed a dominant religious symbol but simultaneously created a space for the becoming of Muslims in Denmark and beyond.
The Impact of Louis Napoleon Bonaparte on European Comic Art, 1848–1870
Louis Napoleon Bonaparte (1808-1873), one-time President of the Second French Republic (1848-1852) and Emperor of the French (as Napoleon III, 1852-1870) exercised a profound effect on European cartoonists and the comic art they produced during his lifetime. As a real historical personality, Louis Napoleon feared the power of the cartoon to make him appear ridiculous and instituted one of the most effective and heavy-handed regimes of censorship of comic art in all European history. Beyond the boundaries of the French Empire, he pressured neighbouring states to protect his image in similar fashion, but in Britain and Germany and beyond, the cartoon Napoleon III became not only ubiquitous in the satirical press, but also served as a powerful touchstone for emerging national identities. The real Louis Napoleon's political and military influence was felt throughout Europe for over two decades, but his cartoon self was even more of a European phenomenon. Usually studied within national contexts, the 'Cartoon Emperor' needs to be studied transnationally in order fully to grasp his importance for developments in European history, as in European comic art.
French-Language Algerian Comics and Cartoons Confront the Nation
Algerian and Algerian-French cartoonists have often thematised national identity in their art. Their interest in this subject has created problems for them when they have crossed the 'affrontier', a line of demarcation whose nature and place have been determined to a considerable degree by the military regime. The analysis of some of its key dimensions - political, religious, spatial, historical and symbolic - allows us to understand how it operates. By studying striking examples of cartoons and comics, their production and consumption, we can come to an understanding of how the affrontier has functioned since 1962, when Algeria gained its independence. The year 1988, when the Algerian regime killed and tortured hundreds of young rioters, stands out as a watershed, because cartoonists then began to redefine their relationship to the military regime, the nation and the affrontier.
Politics, Editorial Cartoons and Bande dessinée in the French Satirical Newspaper Charlie hebdo
The weekly French satirical newspaper, Charlie hebdo, which originally ran from 1969 to 1982, pending a revival in 1992, distinguishes itself through its bête et méchant ['stupid and nasty'] humorous heritage, defined in its parent publication, Hara-Kiri, as the freedom to make jokes on potentially any subject, however taboo. Whilst this satirical ethos predominated in Charlie hebdo up to 1982, its enduring place in the publication has become more ambiguous since 1992, with the abrupt sacking of Siné in July 2008 seemingly belying its vigorous defence of provocative humour in the context of the 2006 Danish caricature affair. An important underlying continuity nonetheless remains in Charlie hebdo and transcends the bête et méchant project: that of negotiating a space for satirical expression that has continuously engaged with both elements of bande dessinée and the rich French tradition of polemical editorial cartooning and caricature.
Tintin's Journeys as an Original Form of Travel Writing
Loïc Loykie Lominé
Georges Rémi (better known as Hergé, a pseudonym made up of his two initials: R G) died in 1983, having made a name as the father of the modern cartoon strip in Western Europe, notably thanks to 23 books narrating the adventures of a betufted boy reporter called Tintin. Tintinology (literally and unambiguously: the study of Tintin) started to develop in the mid-1980s as a small-scale, possibly amusing, area of scholarship – yet one where an increasing number of academics have analysed Tintin and his stories in the light of the most serious intellectual theories, from psychoanalysis (David 1994; Peeters 1984; Tisseron 1985, 1990, 1993) to semiology (Floch 2002) via cultural studies (Masson 1989; Baetens 1990; Bonfand and Marion 1996 ; Tomasi and Deligne 1998). The critical literature on Tintin is expanding alongside the literature on Hergé himself (Tisseron 1987; Smolderen and Sterckx 1988; Ajame 1991; Assouline 1996; Serres 2000; Peeters 2002; Sadoul 2003). This article contributes to this body of Tintin meta-literature by focusing on the way Tintin travelled around the world, from China (The Blue Lotus) to Peru (Prisoners of the Sun) and from Egypt (Cigars of the Pharaoh) to the Arctic Ocean (The Shooting Star).
Scholars have suggested that Pablo Picasso’s The Dream and Lie of Franco (1937), like other tragicomic strips of the Spanish Civil War, combines both satire and tragic subject matter. However, efforts to determine a narrative in Picasso’s Dream and Lie have been inconclusive. This article explains that ‘structural markers’ exist within Picasso’s two plates of nine panels each that comprise Dream and Lie. Among other things, there are four stylistically separated sections to Dream and Lie, a first and third section that focus on Franco generally, and a second and fourth section that depict his victims. Moreover, at the centre of each of the two plates is a portrait of a bull to which Picasso has added his fingerprints. It is suggested that these structural markers and others identified here are able to provide the basis for future discussions of a narrative within Dream and Lie.
This article explores the strategies Gabonese cartoonist Pahé deploys to disrupt media-driven images of Africa in both his autobiographical series La vie de Pahé ['The Life of Pahé'] and the fictional series Dipoula, co-created with French cartoonist Sti. It focuses on the role of humor as a way to mock Western hegemony while exposing how sustained colonial logic informs Western representations of Africa. Using humor that thrives on misrecognition, Pahé thwarts readers' expectations and facilitates new possibilities for thinking through the relationship between Europe and Africa, while also drawing attention to the attendant relationship between Franco-Belgian bandes dessinées and other Francophone comics.
In this article I focus on the graphic narratives Gogi (1970–the present) by Nigar Nazar and Haroon Rashid’s Burka Avenger (2013–the present) in particular to examine the empowering portrayal of Muslim girlhood that these works offer in addition to advocating for the rights of Muslim girls. I emphasize that graphic narratives have become a powerful medium that represents the resistance of Muslim girlhood both in the context of local patriarchies and as a tool to challenge the stereotypical representation of Muslim identities globally. By focusing on the depiction of the girl protagonists in these graphic narratives, I analyze how these artists rework the western superhero trope to foreground the girls’ everyday heroism. Moreover, by situating the interaction of the girls with Pakistani cityscapes, I argue, in terms of De Certeau’s concept of tactics, that the protagonists navigate the Pakistani cities as familiar places rather than as othered spaces.
Understanding Charlie Hebdo
Jane Weston Vauclair
Charlie Hebdo became a global name following the tragic events of 7 January 2015 in Paris. Following this, two competing, somewhat reductive forms of commentary on Charlie Hebdo rapidly emerged in the global media. Could Charlie Hebdo effectively be sidelined as a case of egregiously irresponsible and offensive satire, even if the attacks per se were inexcusable? Or could its cartoonists instead be championed as martyrs to free speech, having proved to have a backbone of conviction and courage that had been lacking elsewhere in the media? This article argues that a dual set of tensions have come to the fore through Charlie's vertiginous global exposure. These are tensions between the local and the global, and between the ethics of conviction and the ethics of responsibility. It looks to highlight how Charlie Hebdo's contributors have been engaging with these tensions, both in the 'survivor's issue' of 14 January 2015 and in other spaces of commentary.