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War of Streets and Houses

Overview

Ignatz award Nomination for Outstanding Graphic Novel

An American artist witnesses the Quebec spring 2012 student strike on the streets of Montreal. The brutal police response and their violent tactics trigger an exploration of urban planning and its hidden connections to military strategies. Marshal Bugeaud’s urban warfare tactics in Algeria, Haussmann’s plan for Paris, planning and repression in the New World; theory and personal experience ...

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Overview

Ignatz award Nomination for Outstanding Graphic Novel

An American artist witnesses the Quebec spring 2012 student strike on the streets of Montreal. The brutal police response and their violent tactics trigger an exploration of urban planning and its hidden connections to military strategies. Marshal Bugeaud’s urban warfare tactics in Algeria, Haussmann’s plan for Paris, planning and repression in the New World; theory and personal experience collide into an ambitious and poetic cartoon memoir.

Sophie Yanow was born north of San Francisco in 1987. In 2011 she moved to Montreal, and with the Colosse collective published In Situ, her acclaimed autobiographical comics series. She was an invited artist- researcher for the Canadian Center for Architecture’s “C for Condo” workshop, and her work has been exhibited throughout the US and Canada. She lives in Montreal.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
★ 03/10/2014
Named for French Marshall Thomas Robert Bugeaud’s seminal 19th-century treatise on urban warfare—written after he crushed an uprising in colonial Algiers—this graphic novel uses Yanow’s experience in the Montreal’s student uprising in 2012 as a springboard for an exploration of matters ranging from the very personal (her experiences as a queer travelling abroad) to the seemingly abstract (including kettling, a police technique used for crowd control). She describes how the ruling classes regulate sexual behavior and threaten to eliminate inexpensive higher education in Canada, which they deem inappropriate for the common folk. Engaging and informative, the book covers a surprisingly broad range of subjects given its brevity. The black-and-white artwork may appear simple but each illustration conveys a wealth of emotional detail, from demonstrations to Yanow’s stripped-down view of herself. The book’s quiet deliberation becomes more impressive with each read; Yanow is an author/illustrator to watch. (Apr.)
From the Publisher
Ignatz award Nomination for Outstanding Graphic Novel

"With deft sketches and minimal text, she shows how the streets of a city can simultaneously foster and crush social change, and how urban humans cling to personal freedom in an increasingly monitored world."—Sarah Goodyear, The Atlantic Cities

"Engaging and informative, the book covers a surprisingly broad range of subjects given its brevity. The black-and-white artwork may appear simple but each illustration conveys a wealth of emotional detail, from demonstrations to Yanow’s stripped-down view of herself. The book’s quiet deliberation becomes more impressive with each read; Yanow is an author/illustrator to watch."—Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

“A fascinating meeting of urban design, activism and theory of the control of the masses.”—Julien Morissette, Radio-Canada/CBC

"Sophie Yanow’s War of Streets and Houses pushes the boundaries of what a graphic novel can be by using comics to create an academic treatise. […] Yanow’s work follows in the footsteps of Situationists who explored how the politics of the layout of cities affect the people who live there."—Lambda Literary

"Her rendering choices are a big key as to why the comic succeeds. She has the ability to flip from near-abstraction to a more naturalistic style, depending on the setting. […] despite the sketchiness of her line, one never feels cheated in terms of visual impact. Indeed, the abstractness of her line combined with the artificial solidity of the zip-a-tone gives the protest scenes a strange quality that would be difficult to capture in a more naturalistic style."—Rob Clough, The Comics Journal

Praise for In Situ:

“Short little bursts of focused energy. Great stuff.”—Frank Santoro, Pompeii

“This is a beautiful first major work by an artist who is quite clearly concerned about how she affects the world, in terms of both art and politics.”—Rob Clough, High-Low Comics

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780984681488
  • Publisher: Uncivilized Books
  • Publication date: 4/1/2014
  • Pages: 60
  • Sales rank: 531,939
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.30 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Sophie Yanow grew up in the woods just north of San Francisco, and in Fall 2011 moved to Montreal, Quebec for an artist residency at La Maison de la Bande Dessinée, where she became a member of the Colosse comics collective. With Colosse she published a collection of journal comics recording her transition to Montreal under the title In Situ, a nod to site-specificity in her creative process. In Montreal she has also participated in projects such as the the 48 Heures de la Bande Dessinée, the strike related online Manif de Bonhommes, and La Hausse en Question strike zine. Her work has also appeared online in places like Top Shelf Comix and The Rumpus. She lives in Montreal.

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