Comics and Novelization A Literary History of Bandes Dessinées
This book opens a novel perspective on comics and literature interactions. It claims that the two artistic media have always maintained a mutual emulation, for as long as they have coexisted in media culture. To demonstrate this, the present research does not focus on literary adaptations in comics form but rather on a literary corpus that remains virtually unexplored: comics-related novels. The purpose of this volume is to inventory French comics-related novels and to study them. Within the limits of the French-speaking world, this book pieces together a literary history of bande dessinée through its novels, from the nineteenth to twenty-first centuries. Although the comic strip – including the aptly named "graphic novel" – has sometimes been regarded as the disciple of an unsurpassable literary model, do these under-studied adaptations in novel form not rather indicate a mutual relationship, or even an emulation, between the two media?
Introduction. Comics-related novels
Comics and literature
A novel perspective on comics and adaptations
Comics novelization and the visual turn of literary writing
Two adaptation processes generating comics-related novels
Towards a literary history of bande dessinée
Chapter 1. Textual margins of early comics
How to verbalize a picture story?
Close reading: Voyages and Adventures of Dr Festus
Captions rewritten as a bridge over redrawn illustrations
Big Little Books and the French book market: a missed rendezvous
From captioned picture stories to serials-under-images
Mickey et Minnie, a precursor to the modern French junior novelization
Chapter 2. Enunciative issues of comics verbalizations
The literary adventures of Tintin
An issue of enunciative responsibility
Literary initiations to a visual universe
Close reading: The Adventures of Tintin
When comics fans write literary panels
From ekphrasis to fanfiction
Chapter 3. Why self-novelize a comic strip?
The illusion of a deeper reading experience
Comics artists and literary illustration
A logic of supplement
Close reading: Acknowledgment of Murders, Ric Hochet’s First Case
From graphic to literary novels
A logic of substitution
Chapter 4. The comics heroes’ childhood told to children
How to relate the past of comics heroes
The literary prequels of French comics characters
Multiple childhoods of a Belgian-Japanese comics heroine
Close reading: The Froth of Dawn, the First Adventure of Yoko Tsuno
Comics-related French junior novelizations
When a comics character writes his own autobiography
Conclusion. Reading novels as comics novelizations
Comics on the threshold of literary texts
Comics as a frame for multimodal storytelling
Comics in the factory of literary writing
Reading novels as comics scripts
Other primary sources
"The relationship between comics and literature is not one-way traffic: literature is not only adapted in graphic novel format, it also owes a lot to the world of comics, appropriating its forms and themes in many ways. Relying on a strong theoretical framework and robust case studies, Benoît Glaude’s trail-blazing study discloses this less known but vital dimension of intermedial connections in modern transmedia culture."
Jan Baetens, KULeuven, Belgium
"The meticulous research and clever thinking shown in this new work represents some of the most influential scholarship in the last decade. Benoît Glaude is a scholar of the highest order and his nuanced treatment is rigorous and powerful."
Hugo Frey, University of Chichester, UK
"Up until now, novelizations had attracted little academic interest. Benoît Glaude’s compelling study shows the interest of looking into this little-known corpus of texts adapting comics into literature. Nourished by fascinating case studies, his book considerably renews our approach to transmedia cultures and opens up a field of primary importance in our understanding of the history of the ninth art."
Sylvain Lesage, Université de Lille, France
"This remarkable work of scholarship brings a new perspective and sharp analytical insights to the study of transmedia adaptation, while providing a master class in the close reading of some famous comics alongside the fascinating and little-known novels that they have engendered."
Ann Miller, University of Leicester, UK