Immigrants and Comics : Graphic Spaces of Remembrance, Transaction, and Mimesis book cover
1st Edition

Immigrants and Comics
Graphic Spaces of Remembrance, Transaction, and Mimesis

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after March 8, 2021
ISBN 9781138186156
March 8, 2021 Forthcoming by Routledge
288 Pages 27 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Immigrants and Comics is an interdisciplinary, themed anthology that focuses on how comics have played a crucial role in representing, constructing, and reifying the immigrant subject and the immigrant experience in popular global culture of the twentieth century.

Nhora Lucía Serrano and a diverse group of contributors examine immigrant experience as they navigate new socio-political milieux in cartoons, comics, and graphic novels across cultures and time periods. They interrogate how immigration is portrayed in comics and how the ‘immigrant’ was an indispensable and vital trope to the development of the comics medium in the twentieth century. At the heart of the book‘s interdisciplinary nexus is a critical framework steeped in the ideas of remembrance and commemoration, what Pierre Nora calls lieux de mémoire.

This book will be of interest to students and scholars in Visual Studies, Comparative Literature, English, Ethnic Studies, Francophone Studies, American Studies, Hispanic Studies, art history, and museum studies.

Table of Contents

Foreword: "Comics as Movement; Comics as Planetary Healing" Frederick Luis Aldama

Introduction: In the Shadow of Liberty: Immigration and the Graphic Space

Nhora Lucía Serrano

Part I: Shaping Comic Traditions, Portraying Immigrants

Chapter One: Of Birds and Men: Metonymic and Symbolic Representations of Immigration in Shaun Tan’s The Arrival 

Fabrice Leroy

Chapter Two: "How quickly we forget": Immigration and Family Narrative in James Sturm's The Golem's Mighty Swing and Unstable Molecules

Brian Cremins

Chapter Three: Postcards from Past: 1893 Chicago World Fair and Chris Ware’s Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth

Nhora Lucía Serrano

Chapter Four: From Immigrants to Privateers: The Curious Case of Hogan's Alley and The Yellow Kid

David M. Ball

Chapter Five: Seeing the invisible and hearing the silenced in Demain, demain: Nanterre, bidonville de la Folie, 1962—1966

Mark McKinney

Chapter Six: Representing the "Invisible People": Eisner’s Immigrant Stories

Susan Kirtley

Chapter Seven: The Immigrant Repressed in Shirato Sanpei's Disappearing Girl and Legend of Kamui

Nicholas Theisen

Part II: Border Crossings, Immigrant Identity

Chapter Eight: Once Upon a Time on the Border: Comic Book Westerns and Immigration in Mexico

Christopher Conway

Chapter Nine: Picturing the (Silent) History of Immigration in France and in French Bandes Dessinées

Michelle Bumatay

Chapter Ten: Brodeck’s Report (Manu Larcenet): A Study in Intermediality

Jan Baetens and Hugo Frey

Chapter Eleven: Migra Mouse: Satire and Hybridity as Latino Decolonization

Mauricio Espinoza

Chapter Twelve: Tracing the Trauma of Clandestine Migration in the Bande Dessinée

Catriona MacLeod

Chapter Thirteen: Immigration, Photography, and the Color Line in Lila Quintero Weaver’s Darkroom: A Memoir in Black & White

Candida Rifkind

Chapter Fourteen: African Diaspora & Black Bodies: X-Men’s Storm

Johnathan Flowers

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Nhora Lucía Serrano is the Associate Director for Digital Learning & Research at Hamilton College. Originally from Colombia, and previously a Visiting Scholar of Comparative Literature at Harvard University, Dr. Serrano is a trained Medieval and Early Modern Visual Studies scholar who was the recipient of a 2018 Mellon Press Diversity Fellowship at the MIT Press, a 2017 NEH Summer Institute fellowship at the Newberry Library, and a 2014 Smithsonian National Postal Museum fellowship. Dr. Serrano is a founding member and currently the Treasurer of the Comics Studies Society, and from 2014-2018, she served on the MLA Executive Forum on Comics and Graphic Narratives.


"Serrano’s work is a valuable asset to comics studies as well as immigration studies. She has put together a fine collection of essays that analyze comics and immigration issues utilizing multidisciplinary theories while integrating examples from across the globe. Her treatment of comics incorporates a multifaceted approach in examining various aspects of the comics culture, including close readings of specific works, the artist/creator as immigrant and the impact some comics have had on immigration policy." -- Jeff Williams, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina