|At least I hope it gets comments.|
The other day my ENGLISH PROFESSOR WHO HAS A DOCTORATE handed me a book that WAS ON HIS SHELF called "Reinventing Comics." This is a book that talks about the rise and fall of comics and how comics can come out of obscurity. This book is a bit dated (1999) so the author hasn't seen the success of the comic book movies. We are not here to discuss the movies though, they are a success and they are helping comics gain popularity, but are they considered legitimate literature? One of the things that "Reinventing Comics" talks about at great lengths is how comics can be considered literature.
Comics started out as either ten cent magazines for kids or "the funnies" in newspapers. It wasn't until Eisner in 1978 wrote the first and coined the phrase "graphic novel." He realized that the comic industry would not be respected until they started making actual bound books. The first "graphic novel" was called "A Contract With God."
"Top 100 Novels of All Time." "The Watchmen" asks the question, "what if superheroes were real?" It is a dark look at the impact superheroes would have on the world, it is magnificent and one of the best written books I have written, honestly. Side note (The best selling comic book is "The Death of Superman" (1992))
|One of the most famous images in comics. From "The Death of Superman." Don't worry he got better.|
1. Written works, esp. those considered of superior or lasting artistic merit: "a great work of literature".
According to the above definition Comic books/Graphic Novels are indeed literature. Comic books still have a long way to go to become legitimate in America (In Japan everybody reads comics, even respected businessmen). But I foresee a day when comics will be respected and studied as literature.