Class Schedule

Date Topics To Be Covered Reading Assignments Assignments Due
1/25 Course Introduction

·       Overview of Syllabus

·       A Brief History of Comics

EQs: What shifts have occurred in critical debates about comic books and graphic novels as a form of reading material, and what has motivated those shifts?

2/1 The Language of Comics (Part I)

EQs: By definition, what are comics, and what (if anything) is distinct about the form?

EQs: What is the “language” of comics, and how does it influence the meanings that readers construct as they transact with graphic novels?

GN: Spiegelman, Maus

McCloud, Chapters 1 and 2

Ewert, “Reading Visual Narrative”

 

2/8 The Language of Comics (Part II)

EQs: What is the “language” of comics, and how does it influence the meanings that readers construct as they transact with graphic novels?

GN: Small, Stitches

McCloud, Chapters 5

Hassett & Schieble, “Finding Space”

2/15 The Role of the Reader

EQs: How do readers make meaning as they transact with multimodal texts? What metaphor best captures the processes readers engage in to construct meaning in their transactions with graphic novels?

GN: Moon & Ba, Daytripper

McCloud, Chapters 3 and 4

 

 

2/22 Reading by Design

EQs: How do readers make meaning as they transact with multimodal texts? What metaphor best captures the processes readers engage in to construct meaning in their transactions with graphic novels?

GN: Lemire, Trillium

Connors, “Designing Meaning”

 

2/29 Image-Word Relationships

EQs: How do word and image collaborate to create meaning?

EQs: What is the “language” of comics, and how does it influence the meanings that readers construct as they transact with graphic novels?

GN: Kelly & Niimora, I Kill Giants

McCloud, Ch. 6

Design Analysis Paper
3/7 Making Multimodal Meaning

EQs: How can the concept of “design” serve as a framework for understanding how readers construct meaning in their transactions with graphic novels?

GN: Johnson, Night Fisher

Connors, “Weaving Multimodal Meaning”

 

3/14 Practicing Comics Criticism

EQs: What does reading comics closely entail, and what are the implications for comics criticism?

GN: Gaiman & Russell, Coraline

Connors, “Expanding Students Analytical Frameworks”

 

Script and Images for Graphic Literacy Narrative
3/21 No Class – Spring Break  

 

3/28 Coming of Age in Words and Pictures

EQs: What does reading comics closely entail, and what are the implications for comics criticism?

GN: Backderf, My Friend Dahmer

Earle, “Bildungsroman”

Graphic Literacy Narrative and Reflective Paper
4/4 No Class

                             

              
4/11 Reading Superhero Comics Critically

EQs What does reading comics closely entail, and what are the implications for comics criticism?

GN: Millar, Superman: Red Son

Cates, “On the Literary Use of Superheroes”

 

 
4/18 Practicing Comics Criticism

EQs: What does reading comics closely entail, and what are the implications for comics criticism?

GN: Satrapi, Persepolis

Robbins, “Using Graphic Memoirs to Discuss Social Justice Issues”

4/25 Are Graphic Novels Art?

EQs: In the case of graphic storytelling, what constitutes “excellence,” and how can it be measured?

GN: Lemire, Essex County

Groensteen, “Why are Comics”

5/2 Putting It All Together McCloud, Chapter 9 Final Project

 

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