English 250

Research Seminar: The Graphic Memoir


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Fall 2018 Wong, Hertha D. Sweet
M 3-6 180 Barrows Graduate Courses

Book List

Barry, Lynda: One! Hundred! Demons! ; Bechdel, Alison: Are You My Mother? A Comic Drama; Bui, Thi: The Best We Could Do; Chast, Roz: Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? A Memoir. ; Eisner, Will: Life, in Pictures: Autobiographical Stories.; Ledesma, Alberto: Diary of a Reluctant Dreamer: Undocumented Vignettes froma Pre-American Life; McCloud, Scott: Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art.; Sacco, Joe: Palestine; Satrapi, Marjane: Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood. ; Speigelman, Art: Maus. Volume I: “A Survivor’s Tale, My Father Bleeds History” and Volume II: “A Survivor’s Tale, And Here My Troubles Began.” ; Yang, Gene Luen: American Born Chinese. ; __________. : Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic.

Other Readings and Media

Reader.

Description

A graphic novel is often defined as “a single-author, book-length work, meant for a grown-up reader, with a memoirist or novelistic nature, usually devoid of superheroes.”  Many comic artists, however, ridicule the term as a pretentious and disingenuous attempt to rebrand comics in order to elevate their cultural status.  We will examine the definitions, history, and diverse forms of graphic narratives in the U.S., focusing on contemporary graphic memoirs (that is, not superheroes). We will also read the recently burgeoning scholarship on the comics form as well as on visual studies and autobiography studies, more generally.

This course satisfies the Group 6 (Non-historical) requirement.

Required Texts

Primary

Lynda Barry.  One! Hundred! Demons!  Seattle:  Susquatch Books, 2002.

Alison Bechdel.  Are You My Mother?A Comic Drama.  Boston/New York:  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012.     

__________.  Fun Home:  A Family Tragicomic.  Boston:  Houghton Mifflin Co., 2006.

Roz Chast.  Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? A Memoir.  New York:  Bloomsbury, 2014.

Will Eisner. Life, in Pictures: Autobiographical Stories. New York: Norton & Co., 2007.

Joe Sacco.  Palestine.  Seattle:  Fantagraphics Books, 2001.

Marjane Satrapi.  Persepolis:  The Story of a Childhood.  New York:  Pantheon, 2003.  

Art Speigelman.  Maus.  Volume I:  “A Survivor’s Tale, My Father Bleeds History” and Volume II:  “A Survivor’s Tale, And Here My Troubles Began.”  New York:  Pantheon, 1986, 1991.

Gene Luen Yang.  American Born Chinese.  New York:  First Second, 2006.

Thi Bui.  The Best We Could Do.

Alberto Ledesma.  Diary of a Reluctant Dreamer: Undocumented Vignettes froma Pre-American Life

Secondary

Scott McCloud. Understanding Comics:  The Invisible Art.  1993.  New York:  Paradox Press, 2000.

Reader.

Other Recent Sections of This Course

Fall, 2018
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
250/3 Research Seminar: Textual Communities and the Modern Picciotto, Joanna M
250/4 Research Seminar: Evolution and Literary Form, 1800-1900 Duncan, Ian
Spring, 2018
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
250/2 Research Seminar: Ways of Knowing, Ways of Representing in Eighteenth-Century English Fiction Sorensen, Janet
250/3 Research Seminar: Milton and the English Civil War Kahn, Victoria
250/4 Research Seminar: The Rhetoric of Technique Lavery, Grace
250/5 Research Seminar: Black Abstraction Best, Stephen M.
Fall, 2017
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
250/1 Research Seminar: Victorian Cultural Studies Puckett, Kent
250/2 Research Seminar: How to Write a Book Kahn, Victoria
250/3 Research Seminar: Paranoid States: Empire and the Rise of the Surveillance State Saha, Poulomi
250/4 Research Seminar: Gender, Sexuality, Modernism Abel, Elizabeth
Spring, 2017
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
250/1 Research Seminar: Wordsworth and Coleridge in Collaboration Goodman, Kevis
250/2 Research Seminar: Modernism in Poetry and in Art Altieri, Charles F.
250/3 Research Seminar: Idols and Ideology—Readings in Augustine, Milton, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Hobbes, Kant, Marx, Freud, Althusser Kahn, Victoria
Fall, 2016
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
250/1 Research Seminar: Representing Non-Human Life in Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Britain Picciotto, Joanna M
250/2 Research Seminar: Ethnic Modernisms Lee, Steven S.
250/3 Research Seminar: Literature and the Brain Gang, Joshua
Spring, 2016
Course & Section Course Name Course Areas
250/1 Research Seminar: Capitalist Crisis and Literature Gonzalez, Marcial
250/2 Research Seminar: The Limits of Historicism Best, Stephen M.
250/3 Research Seminar: How It Strikes a Contemporary: Reading the Novel in the 21st Century Snyder, Katherine
Snyder, Katie
250/4 Research Seminar: Modernism's Metaphysics Blanton, C. D.

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