"Politics of Weirdness in Contemporary Comics"
Description: In this course, we’ll tackle a number of recent comics (or graphic novels, as publishers are fond of calling them) that are decidedly weird in their approach to visual storytelling. While weirdness in comics is nothing new—recall Krazy Kat and Little Nemo in Slumberland, to name the most obvious early examples—these works are distinguished by their explicit exploration of a relationship between formal experimentation and political or cultural resistance. Put another way, theirs is a championing of weirdness in the look, line, coloring and page layout of visual narratives as a means of thinking through social difference and its many phenomena that cannot be had in quite the same way in written texts. Our time will be balanced between critical reading and debate and more creative experiments inspired by our discussions. Works will include, among other things: My Favorite Thing is Monsters; Ant Colony; Black Hole; Bitch Planet; The System; and What It Is.