The Joint International Conference of Graphic Novels, Comics and the International Bande Dessinée Society’s Seventh International Conference
July 5-8 2011
Manchester Metropolitan University
The bande dessinée part of the joint conference took up the baton after two very stimulating days with GNAC and SIC. We too were pleased by the quantity and quality of papers and we ran parallel sessions. The morning of 7th July began with panels comprising two distinct strands: bandes dessinées and Francophone Africa, and BDs drawing upon the European Classics. The first strand began with Laurike in’t Veld’s insights into how the Rwandan genocide was represented in comics, and continued with Michel Bumatay’s study of Sub-Saharan African Francophone BDs. The focus on Africa continued with Mark Mckinney, who drew upon (post) colonial strips to argue that autobiography began in BDs earlier than is generally recognised. This was followed by Cathal Kilcline’s analysis of Boudjellal, who depicts an immigrant family in Toulon. The European Classics strand began with papers by Linda Rabea-Heyden and Matthew Screech on comic strip adaptations of canonical literary works: Goethe’s Faust and Voltaire’s Candide. Next came a re-examination of bande dessinée Classics with Bart Beaty, who closely scrutinised panels from Bravo’s re-make of the best-selling hero Spirou. Another strip to enter the pantheon of classics, Lieutenant Blueberry, was discussed by Martha Zan, who established its similarities with ss.
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Tags: Africa, Alberto Cipriani, Ann Miller, Annick Pellegrin, anti-comics feeling, architecture, autobiography, Émile Bravo, bande dessinée, Bart Beaty, body, Canada, Catriona Macleod, Charlotte Pylyser, China, Christophe Meunier, Clare Tufts, colonialism, Dali, detective BD, dramatic intensity, Edmond Baudoin, Etienne Davodeau, excess, Fernand Stefanich, Flanders, France, Gender, Germany, Goethe, Greice Schneider, Guy Delisle, Hélène Sirven, Hergé, Holland, immgration, Jimenez Lai, Jorge Catala-Carrasco, Klara Arnberg, Latin America, Laurence Grove, Laurike in’t Veld, Le Temple du Soleil, Les Sept Boules de Cristal, Lieutenant Blueberry, Linda Rabea-Heyden, Louvre, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manuel de la Fuente, Mark McKinney, Mary Toft, Matthew Screech, Mauro Marchesi, Michael D. Picone, Michel Bumatay, Michel Rabagliati, Michelle Bloom, Moebius, Morris, museum, narrative tension, Paracuellos, parody, Paul Malone, Pénélope Bagieu, Pierre Fresnault-Deruelle, post-feminism, Renata Pascoal, Rik Sanders, Rikke Platz Cortsen, Rwandan genocide, space, spaghetti Westerns, Spanish Civil War, Spirou, Steven Surdiacourt, Sub-Saharan African Francophone BD, Sweden, Sylvie Dardaillon, time, Tomas Nilson, UK, Voltaire, Western Comics, Women
The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, a movie directed by Steven Spielberg and produced by Peter Jackson, is scheduled for release before the end of 2011. The film reportedly combines the stories from three books in the world-famous comics series by Belgian cartoonist Hergé (Georges Remi): The Crab with the Golden Claws, The Secret of the Unicorn and Red Rackham’s Treasure. Most movie-goers will have no idea about the historical context in which these three stories were first drawn and published. All were originally serialized by the cartoonist in Le Soir, a newspaper then controlled by the Nazis during their occupation of Belgium. And in the same newspaper, in between the first of these stories and the other two (which constitute a diptych), Hergé drew and published The Shooting Star, whose original version was clearly an antisemitic libel. This was at a time when the Nazis were preparing to kill the Jews in Belgium. Leafing through those old newspapers is a sobering experience, as one reads positive reviews of antisemitic movies and public speeches, and official notification of administrative measures designed to identify and isolate Jews in preparation for the genocide. Today Hergé is mostly celebrated as a creative comics genius, but historical facts like this should encourage us to delve deeper into the relationships between the form, the content and the context of his comics.
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Tags: adaptation, Africa, Algeria, anti-Semitism, bande dessinée, Barly Baruti, Belgium, colonialism, Congo, Farid Boudjellal, France, Franco-Belgian Comics, Futuropolis, Hergé, History, imperialism, Le Soir, Mourad Boudjellal, Nazi occupation of Belgium, Peter Jackson, Soleil Productions, Steven Spielberg, The Adventures of Tintin, Tintin, USA