Strips, Toons, and Bluesies: Essays in Comics and Culture

bluesies.jpgAs a comic book enthusiast, it's refreshing to come across a book that takes the medium seriously.  Published by Princeton Architectural Press, Strips, Toons, and Bluesies appreciates the significance of comics; the role they have played historically and their impact on popular visual culture.

Four essays explore issues such as the relationship between comics and animation -how the emergence of comic strips like Felix the Cat and Little Nemo influenced early cartooning; the 'Underground' comic movement of the 1960s and 70s which pushed boundries with the highly sexual 'Tijuana Diaries' and other counter-culture publications; Jaime Hernandez's 'Locas' stories published in Love and Rockets during the early to mid-eighties which explored the depiction of marginalized subcultures in Southern California; and a look at the portrayal of African American characters during the 1960s, namely by Robert Crumb, Mad Magazine, and Stan Lee's character 'Black Panther'.

Compiled by D.B. Dowd, professor of art at the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts, and Todd Hignite, founding editor of Comic Art magazine and author of In the Studio: Visits with Contemporary Cartoonists, this compilation begins to explore the significance of an often-overlooked cultural document.

 Available at UPPERCASE $27.95