My uncle Ricardo and his family flew in from Buenos Aires. I remember them arriving at the house hours after the expected time. Someone said something about them missing the plane. Years later I found out straight from him and my cousins—who, like me, were also children in —that they had been detained at the airport because Etel was still wanted, and my uncle shared with her the same family names, and their order.
While the Argentine cinema industry was left with little room to express its art as a form of resonance of social reality of the time, and as a result produced a myriad of politically safe comedies and musicals, foreign movies were censored to the point of mutilation. There he utilized other means of expression such as comics as tools of political intervention.
Either way, a deal with Mephisto. For the regular person at home, self-censorship as part of self-preservation resulted in many whispered conversations and jokes. Hay deci-tares, centi-tares, y mili-tares. Why was Quino, and his work, spared in Argentina, where censorship was so fierce?
Ever since she keeps on being re-printed. Quino, Toda Mafalda, 29th ed. Buenos Aires: Ediciones de la Flor, , Such was the case of Spain, where Mafalda was published with a banner warning that the contents were meant for adults.
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Figure 1. This is the This introduction is particularly relevant to non-expert reader in Argentine culture and history, and it, therefore, offers a contextualization of Mafalda in the climate of the region. In the following chapter, I explain the theoretical frameworks that inform my methodological choices, including my choice to approach my work interdiciplinarily. It is here relevant to point out that as part of my method, and from a structural point of view throughout my dissertation, I analyze select strips that illustrate and support those discussions, some in the main body when this does not disrupt flow, and others, by themes—such as the middle class, poverty, racism, the role of women, and war—in the appendices located at the end of the dissertation.
I refer to all comic strips in the main body discussions.
An accompanying analysis of the strips in the appendices supports the core discussions in the chapters. Footnotes in the main body indicate the location of each such comic strip in the appendices by its relevance to the discussion at hand in each given chapter, and it is easy to locate via footnotes in the main body. Chapter three examines the themes Quino treats in his iconic classic and how this treatment affects the bond between the strip characters, their creator, and the readership across geopolitical borders and sociocultural boundaries.
I discuss relevant aspects for the understanding of the phenomenon that Mafalda has become such as identifying the 52 readership, the effects of censorship and resistance, and the true meaning of soup, as well as a discussion on the cosmopolitan nature of the comic and its authority as a witness, and, consequently, as an historical source for research.
The fourth chapter constitutes the core of this dissertation, and analyzes the concept of site of refuge in four parts: first, I explain the concept of site of refuge, and how it applies to my work. It is within that sense of complicity that a free space unfolds in which the audience feels a sense of comforting safety.
Third, what are the workings of this site of refuge from the perspective of the contemporaneous reader , and fourth, how this concept operates for audiences since. The fifth chapter brings forth the conclusions drawn from the research and analyses in the previous chapters, expounding how they come together, as well as noting distinct results yielded by differences in approach.
A bibliography organized by type of source follows: academic articles, and books and book chapters, as opposed to newspaper and magazine articles—interviews, movies, and podcasts, and sources for strip images. In the appendices, I have organized Mafalda comic strips by theme as 53 treated throughout the chapters that would have disrupted flow if inserted in the main body.
Jephcott London: Verso, , From on, publishing house, Ediciones de la Flor, under the direction of Editor in Chief and co-founder Daniel Divinsky, ten books of compilations by season were published, followed by numerous editions of compilations mentioned elsewhere in this dissertation were also published by de la Flor. The concept of transcendence is also present with the expectation that a newspaper cartoon will be disposed of and perhaps forgotten whereas a comic book is expected to be kept. The lack of consensus regarding best practice yields an animated, ongoing conversation, as well as broad freedom in the choice of a theoretical framework to tackle the study of comics.
An important reason for the disagreement on this issue is an underlying debate over a definition of comics, as well as the question of whether or not it is important to define comics at all. While M. Anne Magnussen and Hans-Christian Christiansen, trans. Over time, these forums have established themselves solidly as sites for the study of comics, knowledge exchange, and dissemination of comics scholarship involving scholars dedicated to the teaching and studying of comics, as well as publishing academic work on the subject, and university departments offering complete graduate degrees in the field.
Chris Murray, is also co-editor—with Dr. Julia Round—of the peer reviewed journal Studies in Comics, an important source for any comics scholar. The University Press of Mississippi has led the way in publishing numerous books that tackle scholarly questions about comics. The University of Lancaster offers a doctoral program in comics studies.
Neuroscientist, comics scholar, and author Dr. Neil Cohn runs the Visual Language Lab website, where he presents his research and publications. While comics act as witness to and reflection of a society on the one hand, they simultaneously influence that very same society that brought them to life and received them. They become an indivisible part of the socio-cultural identity—both collective and individual—by becoming a component of the social construct of reality in the members of that group, which, in turn, contributes to the construct of reality of the same social group. It is, therefore, due to that very multidimensionality of perspectives inherent to comics—and their study—that an interdisciplinary approach that fuses discourse analysis with visual elements, and cultural analysis, demands to be used in their examination, and that broad approach is underpinned by a new historicist lens.
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New Historicism So as the creator of a literary work or a work of art, a cultural artifact, cannot uncouple himself from his voice and intent, neither can the scholar when studying such cultural artifact. My choice is merely due to a desire for simplification in language for the sake of both simplicity and clarity. Strictly speaking, one must discern the underlying biases that may be inherent in the study being used as reference.
Even when identifying those biases in the source, the process will be done under the influence of those of the reviewer. Therefore, and drawing on Perspectivism, there is no such thing as absolute truth any more than there is no such thing as objectivity. The only things that exist are kaleidoscopic, fragmented views of a notion of truth that derive from different perceptions stemming from different perspectives.
No underlying objective truth exists to act as standard against which these perspectives can be measured and compared. With the understanding that the product does not merely act as a reflection of that history, as well as that history is not an absolute collection of solid facts, New Historicism showcases the multiplicity of perspectives at play when interpreting that product. This approach seeks to highlight that mutual influence between the circumstances and conditions present at the time of And the object of enquiry may also be subject to additional, external influences such as censorship.
New York: Continuum, Hence, no matter what theoretical approach I consolidate to analyze Mafalda, the underpinning framework must be that of New Historicism. Edward N. Zalta Winter Some of the arguments made against viewing comics as art are, first, that due to its character of product for mass culture, it is inherent that its aesthetic quality is of lesser weight when compared to works of fine art, and second, that the medium is disposable, and as such, transient.
More significant, however, is the third argument, namely, that comics lack the capacity to express emotion and represent content. Comics and Film: a Natural? Aesthetic Comparison Due to the relatively recent interest of academia in regards to the study of comics, theoretical approaches are still in the process of defining themselves as interest in this field continues to grow. As part of that work, comics are Ibid, See Meskin, The Aesthetics, He draws dramatized comics based on real events that both inform and increase awareness on serious issues.
His work in general is of strong political content that elicits an intense emotionally charged response, but he is not the only one. For more examples of content in comics, see Hillary L. For a case for intellectual comics as opposed to the position of comics being solely mass art , see Charles Hatfield, Alternative Comics: an Emerging Literature Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, Due to their shared nature of sequential images and plausibility of being considered hybrid art forms that marry narrative with visuals, film and comics are considered as having much in common, and are consequently often compared.
Here, Thierry Groensteen cements the ground in by offering an analysis of the aesthetic and narrative differences between comics and film. In a rather hermetic style, he propounds that the images in comics are allowed a certain whimsy that is not present in film as words and text are added to the panels in order to convey essential elements. This, ultimately, yields a certain leeway to the images in comics, which can then concern themselves with more fantastical elements.
For Groensteen, therefore, images are not bound to represent literally. In film, however, this is not the case because the decoupage—the act of cutting visual action into units or vignettes—is different for film and comics.
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While for comics a certain freedom and dynamism is imparted by the art form as the artist is free to choose layouts that best convey the intended telling goals, in film the layout is limited by the linear frame that constrains this art form to tell a story in a given way. For comics, there is no such process as equivalents to pen and paper have existed since time immemorial. In cinema, however, the process comprises several steps: writing the scenario, preparation casting, rehearsals , filming, editing, and mixing.
Grosso modo: filming and editing. Filming implies scene composition, which informs, in turn, the actual shooting of the scene impacting the final editing process that determines which scene is shown in what order. For Groensteen, the simplified—and purer—process for comics consists of only two steps: idea to pen, then publication. An immediacy exists in the creation process of comics that is absent in that of film.
For more on differences between comics and film see Groensteen, Du 7e. Aaron Meskin and R. Instead, they are analogous to film shots as they are both created and meant to be read, and watched, in sequence, thus creating a parallel between the seventh and the ninth arts. Although his discussion focuses on comic book covers by Marc-Antoine Mathieu, he nevertheless makes points that can be easily applied to the content of said books, just as Jeff Williams does with his example of a specific cover of a Superman comic book.
This is where the aesthetic aspect of comics and their subversive function overlap as the latter is conveyed in the former.
Williams quotes Gramsci as he expounds on counter hegemony. His analysis, however, was on American comics published in the United States. It would prove more than interesting to conduct a pan- American contrastive analysis of this kind to see if the same conclusion is true for Latin American Williams, Comics, a Tool, Forgacs and G. Nowell-Smith, trans. The results of such research could shed light on the question of whether or not comics serve as venting valve for oppressed societies, and how the issue intersects with central forces such as censorship.
Subversion, therefore, consists of challenging those normative notions of what is socially and culturally acceptable in order to assign new meaning to those notions by means of a process of resignification that will yield a converted vision of the world. Despite the fluidity of agency in the sense that assigning it during interpretation is elusive in order to resist hegemony, taking agency is key. Without it, the process of resignification cannot take place, leaving the existing hegemonic worldview intact.
John B. Thompson, trans. His second argument against the alleged inherent subversive character of comics is that although he concedes that a minor argument could be made for what Charles Hatfield deemed as a high culture message delivered in a low culture form and as such, automatically subversive, it is nevertheless invalid due to the historical and geographical limitations of this phenomenon. Sanctions mark the transition form social behavior to social practices: If sanctions in the sense of reinforcements or discouragements of certain forms of behavior are a manifestation of normative attitudes of taking something to be correct or incorrect, then there are social practices in distinction to mere social behavior.