Random records through the 2017 ComFor conference

Random records through the 2017 ComFor conference

Regular readers of the blog may have wondered why, after 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, there clearly was no blogpost regarding the 2016 ComFor (German Society for Comics Studies) meeting. There clearly was a easy basis for that: I experiencedn’t attended year’s conference that is last. A couple of weeks ago, nonetheless, we took the journey to Bonn where this year’s seminar (subject: “Comics and their Popularity”) happened. Please be aware that the next records aren’t designed to acceptably summarise the conference that is respective; alternatively they’re rather subjective and random – thus the name with this blogpost.

The meeting began on Friday, December 1 because of the Workshops” that is“Open.e. Documents outside the seminar theme of “Comics and their Popularity”.


  • The presentation that is first by Zita Husing (Bonn) on “Being and Nature: the importance regarding the Southern Space of this Swamp in Alan Moore’s The Saga for the Swamp Thing” for which she submit connections between tropes regarding the United states South and Swamp Thing, e.g. That both are difficult to kill – no matter just how defectively these are typically maimed or burned down, they constantly keep coming back through the dead. Like was remarked into the conversation afterward, nonetheless, it is interesting how authors after Moore, such as for example Jeff Lemire, have actually expanded Swamp Thing’s backstory in to a cosmology that shifts the main focus through the regional to your worldwide.
  • Into the paper that is second “Batwing, Batflugel oder Flugel-Bat. Die onimischen Einheiten im Comic” (“onimic devices in comics” – all translations mine), Rafal Jakiel (Wroclaw) viewed the names (poetonyms) of figures in superhero comics and identified traits such as for example their simple iconicity: as an example, Killer Croc is merely a murderous guy whom appears like a crocodile.
  • Daniela Kaufmann (Graz) then delivered “A Study in monochrome. Zur Signifikanz der Farben Schwarz und Wei? im Comic” (“on the importance associated with tints black colored and white in comics”). Beginning with Kazimir Malevich’s Ebony Square – showcased e.g. In Nicolas Mahler’s comic Lulu und das Schwarze Quadrat – she proceeded to Krazy Kat and also the racial ambiguity of both its creator George Herriman and its own eponymous protagonist.
  • It was accompanied by Elisabeth Krieber‘s (Salzburg) paper on “Subversive feminine shows in artistic Media – Phoebe Gloeckner’s and Alison Bechdel’s Graphic Narratives” which additionally considered the adaptation that is musical of Residence and also the movie adaptation of Diary of a Teenage woman.

Unfortuitously we missed the following two talks by Karoline M. Pohl and Sakshi Wason, correspondingly, whom shut the “Open Workshops” section and after that the documents regarding the “Popularity” theme began.

  • The next presentation we attended ended up being by Veronique Sina (Cologne / Tubingen) on “Comickeit is Judischkeit. Uber das diskursive Zusammenspiel von Comic, Popularkultur und judischer Identitat” (“on the discursive interplay of comics, popular tradition, and Jewish identity”). Her primary examples had been the comics of Aline Kominsky-Crumb and Harvey Pekar, and she additionally talked about Jonas Engelmann’s theory of popular tradition whilst the dissolution of identification.
  • Pnina Rosenberg (Haifa) talked about “Mickey au camp de Gurs: governmental critique and car censorship in comics done throughout the Holocaust”, by which she delivered three photo publications created by Hans Rosenthal during their internment at a concentration camp in 1942.
  • The keynote that is first of seminar was presented with by Julia Round (Bournemouth), en en titled “Canon or typical? Sandman, Aesthetics, Intertextuality and Literariness”. She talked about the ongoing fight about the status of comics as a whole and Sandman in specific as literary works (also: high vs. Low art, “graphic novels” vs. Comic publications), exactly exactly exactly exactly how this can be impacted by the intimate writer idea around Neil Gaiman (“Mr Gaiman could be the Sandman” – Clive Barker), and exactly how this discourse comes towards the fore in fan conversations at neilgaimanboard.com.

Saturday, December 2:

  • inside the talk on “Batmans queere Popularitat. Ein comicwissenschaftlicher und kulturhistorischer Annaherungsversuch” (“Batman’s queer popularity. A method through the viewpoint of comics studies and social history”), Daniel Stein (Siegen) talked about how Batman is appropriated as homosexual by some visitors, while some are gripped by ‘queer anxiety’, i.e. The fear that their beloved character might formally be homosexual.
  • Laura Antola‘s (Turku) paper “Marvel’s Comics in Finland: Translation, ‘Mail-Man’ plus the appeal of superheroes” portrayed the eccentric figure of ‘Mail-Man’, a real-life translator and editor whom additionally responded fan mail when you look at the page pages of Finnish Marvel comics from 1980 forward.
  • “Das Popula(e)re und das Signifikante. Der Comic als Antwort auf die Krise liberaler Erzahlungen? ” (“The popular and also the significant. Comics as a remedy to your crisis of liberal narratives? ”) by Mario Zehe (Leipzig) talked about Economix by Goodwin/Burr, Le Singe de Hartlepool by Lupano/Moreau, and Lucky Luke: Los Angeles Terre vow by Jul/Achde as samples of comics that demonstrate the limitations of cosmopolitanism.
  • Stephan Packard (Cologne) mentioned “President Lex Luthor, Wakanda und der osteuropaische Schwarzwald. Zur popularen Ideologie der Fiktionalitat in Comics” (“President Lex Luthor, Wakanda as well as the Eastern European Black Forest. In the popular ideology of fictionality in comics”) therefore the connection that is sometimes problematic fictional things and their real-world counterparts. A striking instance is the current “Alien Nation” tale from Captain Marvel vol. 1 (2017) that is partly set into the “Black Forest”, albeit A black colored woodland that does not look such a thing just like the genuine one in Southern Western Germany and it is found, relating to a caption, in “Eastern Europe”. Packard unfolded a tight framework that is theoretical included the kinds of fiction concept talked about by Marie-Laure Ryan like the ‘principle of minimal departure’, but also Theodor Adorno’s ‘categorical imperative regarding the tradition industry’, and others.

Lecture hallway IX at Bonn University during David Turgay’s talk. Photograph by Ronny Bittner

The paper that is next David Turgay‘s (Landau) extremely interesting “Das alternate im Popularen: Eine korpusgestutzte Analyse von Mainstream-Comics” (“the alternative within the popular: a corpus-based analysis of mainstream comics”) in which he examined the panels of 150 US comic publications from 1996 and from 2016 pertaining to six requirements: politics / social critique, narrative peculiarities, creative peculiarities, metafictional elements, absence of fighting, and lack of text. The outcome associated with analysis revealed an increase that is significant of requirements with time, but overall these traits (which David Turgay interpreted while the impact of separate comics) nevertheless took place less frequently in 2016 than anticipated.

  • In their presentation on “Der Fluch der Graphic Novel aus (hochschul)didaktischer Sicht” (“the curse regarding the visual novel through the perspective of (tertiary) training”), Markus Oppolzer (Salzburg) talked hairy pussy big tits video about the dreaded g-word once more, but he also talked about Conan the Librarian through the movie UHF – as being a librarian myself, We can’t think We had never ever heard about him before!
  • Dietrich Grunewald (Reiskirchen) talked about “Grenzganger. Comics Bildende that is und Kunst (“border crossers. Comics and fine art”) and exactly how artwork such as for instance paintings are employed in comics, e.g. As background details in Volker Reiche’s Strizz.
  • Christian A. Bachmann‘s (Bochum) share ended up being most likely the one with all the longest name: “Slippers and music are particularly various things, oder: von high key to low key. Zur Darstellung popularer Musik in Bildergeschichten diverses 19. Und Comics des fruhen 20. Jahrhunderts” (“from high key to key that is low. Regarding the depiction of popular music in photo tales regarding the nineteenth and comics of this very very very early twentieth century”). Among their examples had been Billy DeBeck’s Barney Bing and Richard F. Outcault’s Buster Brown.
  • Kirsten von Hagen (Gie?en) introduced a paper on “Tintin und die Recherche: Von der ‘ligne claire’ Herges zu den synasthetischen Traumsequenzen bei Heuet” (“Tintin plus the recherche: from Herge’s ‘ligne claire’ to Heuet’s synesthetic fantasy sequences”). Stephane Heuet adapted Marcel Proust’s looking for Lost Time as a number of comic volumes utilizing a ligne claire design.
  • Martin Lund (Vaxjo / brand brand brand New York) offered the keynote that is second “Jack T. Chick, a well known Propagandist”. With more than 260 ‘Chick tracts’ since 1961 of which a predicted 900 million copies have now been distributed, Chick could have been “the most commonly distributed comics creator worldwide” (Darby Orcutt 2010 – but see also https: //en. Wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_comic_series). Chick’s comics really are a wellspring of real information on subjects such as for example development, abortion and weather modification; for example, are you aware that “global warming experts pray to Ixchel“, the Mayan “goddess associated with the moon and creativity”? But really: in accordance with Martin Lund, the Chick tracts had been never ever meant to transform unbelievers to Chick’s beliefs that are twisted but alternatively to reassure those individuals who currently had been on their part.
  • Sunday, December 3:

    • Michael Wetzel‘s (Bonn) paper had been en en en titled “‘Graphic Auteurism‘: Von Kreativitat und Copyright im Comic” (“On creativity and copyright in comics”). An appealing theory had been that the favorite notion of a ‘Romanticist idea of authorship’ is flawed because Romanticist writers such as for example E. T. A. Hoffmann actually deconstructed authorship.