Comics, Comix & Graphic Novels: A History Of Comic Art

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Comics, Comix & Graphic Novels is the first fully documented study to explore the graphic qualities of the comic book, and the development of the genre into a sophisticated and culturally revealing popular art form. The book traces the history of the comic from early cartoon-like woodcuts through to the graphic strips of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Organized thematically, it explores the various genres of the comic book, including humour, adventure, girls' comics, underground comics, and ...
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Overview

Comics, Comix & Graphic Novels is the first fully documented study to explore the graphic qualities of the comic book, and the development of the genre into a sophisticated and culturally revealing popular art form. The book traces the history of the comic from early cartoon-like woodcuts through to the graphic strips of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Organized thematically, it explores the various genres of the comic book, including humour, adventure, girls' comics, underground comics, and alternative comics. The careers of the creators of the best-known characters -- from Superman and Tintin to Tank Girl -- are revealed, as are the stories behind the much-loved comics such as The Beano and The Incredible Hulk. The most recent artists are also illustrated and discussed, including Harvey Kurtzman (Mad), Chris Donald (Viz), Art Spiegelman (Maus) and Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira).

About the Author

Roger Sabin is an arts journalist and lecturer at Central St Martin's College of Art, London. He is the author of the highly acclaimed Adult Comics: An Introduction.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
This book is a must-read for anyone interested in comics and cartoons. A genre that is often written off as an inferior art form gets its due in this eye-opening volume. Author Roger Sabin presents a meticulously researched history of comics -- from early woodblock prints with recognizable graphic elements to anime and contemporary graphic novels -- in this big, illustrated book. Featuring a layout that crackles with the energy of the genre it chronicles, Comics, Comix & Graphic Novels is packed with more than 400 color illustrations. In addition to sketching comics history, Sabin also covers the careers of famous comics artists, from early masters to today's biggest names. This fantastic book deserves a place on every comics fan's bookshelf.
Daily Telegraph
A handsome book with informative text.
Newsweek
It isn't the only such book you'll find out there -- just the best ... Production values? A-plus.
The Guardian
Here at last is an authoritative and beautifully produced history of this vigorous and versatile art form, which covers as much of the whole field as a single book could.
Wired
Comics, Comix & Graphic Novels is as energetic as a jolt of double espresso -- and as simultaneously appealing to both sophisticated and street sensibilities.... Under Sabin's fluid hand, images and text come together like an expert cartoonist's frame-by-frame assemblage of drawings and dialogue balloons.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Arts journalist Sabine provides a British eye view of the origins of the comic strip and the comics industry with this heavily illustrated, comprehensive, brisk and lucidly written historical overview. Eschewing the usual antecedents (for example, the Bayeux Tapestry in Normandy), he starts with 17th-century English execution broadsheets (mass-produced woodcuts of public beheadings and the like) and the satirical engravings of Hogarth before locating the beginnings of the modern comic strip in such illustrated 19th-century British humor magazines as Punch. He is particularly enlightening when discussing the little-known, superbly illustrated Ally Sloper's Half Holiday from 1884, both a magazine and cartoon character that predate Richard Outcault's 1896 strip The Yellow Kid, usually credited with launching the modern American strip. Although there's much about British strips and publishers that will be new to American readers, Sabine does not slight U.S. comics, and his binational discussions of the industry's notoriously exploitative working conditions and women's comics is invaluable. This excellent treatment ends with a look at new alternative artists, the impact of Japanese comics (or manga) and animation (anime) and the current transformation of the comics market and comics distribution. (Nov.)
Library Journal
Comics, comix (adult-oriented comics focused on psychosocial or political issues), and graphic novels, hitherto discarded into the subcanonical gutter of "mere entertainment," have recently begun to acquire grudging respectability as "real" art and literature. Thus, any serious and thorough considerations of the subject are both recent and rare phenomena, and this work could therefore claim a place in most collections simply by virtue of its uniqueness. However, the astounding historical and tranglobal scope of this undertakingfrom 12th-century Bayeux tapestry to current Japanese worksits generosity of visual example, and its consistently perceptive placement within both social and artistic contexts will make this the Jensen of its genre for years to come. Sabin (lecturer, Central St. Martin's College of Art) has created a work that will offer both giddy amusement to lay readers and serious value as textbook and reference source to scholars and librarians. For all collections.Bill Piekarski, Southwestern Coll. Lib., Chula Vista, Cal.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780714839936
  • Publisher: Phaidon Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/2001
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 10.00 (w) x 11.50 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Comix & Graphic Novels is the first fully documented study to explore the graphic qualities of the comic book, and the development of the genre into a sophisticated and culturally revealing popular art form. The book traces the history of the comic from early cartoon-like woodcuts through to the graphic strips of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Organized thematically it explores the various genres of the comic book, including humour, adventure, girls' comics, underground and alternative. The careers of the creators of the best-known characters from Superman and Tintin to Tank Girl are revealed, as are the stories behind the much-loved comics such as The Beano and The Incredible Hulk. The most recent artists are also illustrated and discussed, including Harvey Kurtzman (Mad), Chris Donald (Viz), Art Spiegelman (Maus) and Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira).
Read More Show Less

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