Comic Art Propaganda: A Graphic History

Comic Art Propaganda: A Graphic History
by Fredrik Strömberg
St. Martin’s Press, 2010

A wide-ranging and entertaining look at how a medium traditionally associated with dullards and sociopaths has been used (for better and worse) to communicate ideologically loaded information as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Particularly egregious are the infamous Chick Tracts (banned in Canada!) and the shameless co-opting of Mickey Mouse to plug Exxon, although Archie’s evangelical comics and a sophisticated pastiche of Tintin which styles him as a British anarchist are just hilarious. The “positive” propaganda is understandably a bit dull by comparison. There’s also an interesting analysis (informed by Alison Bechdel) of the many “all-boys clubs” in comics, from the Smurfs to Beetle Bailey, and the many political scandals of Doonesbury.


Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: