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Graphic Novels for Children and Young Adults: A Collection of Critical Essays

Graphic Novels for Children and Young Adults: A Collection of Critical Essays


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With contributions by:

Eti Berland, Rebecca A. Brown, Christiane Buuck, Joanna C. Davis-McElligatt, Rachel Dean-Ruzicka, Karly Marie Grice, Mary Beth Hines, Krystal Howard, Aaron Kashtan, Michael L. Kersulov, Catherine Kyle, David E. Low, Anuja Madan, Meghann Meeusen, Rachel L. Rickard Rebellino, Rebecca Rupert, Cathy Ryan, Joe Sutliff Sanders, Joseph Michael Sommers, Marni Stanley, Gwen Athene Tarbox, Sarah Thaller, Annette Wannamaker, and Lance Weldy

One of the most significant transformations in literature for children and young adults during the last twenty years has been the resurgence of comics. Educators and librarians extol the benefits of comics reading, and increasingly, children's and YA comics and comics hybrids have won major prizes, including the Printz Award and the National Book Award. Despite the popularity and influence of children's and YA graphic novels, the genre has not received adequate scholarly attention.

Graphic Novels for Children and Young Adults is the first book to offer a critical examination of children's and YA comics. The anthology is divided into five sections, structure and narration; transmedia; pedagogy; gender and sexuality; and identity, that reflect crucial issues and recurring topics in comics scholarship during the twenty-first century. The contributors are likewise drawn from a diverse array of disciplines--English, education, library science, and fine arts. Collectively, they analyze a variety of contemporary comics, including such highly popular series as Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Lumberjanes; Eisner award-winning graphic novels by Gene Luen Yang, Nate Powell, Mariko Tamaki, and Jillian Tamaki; as well as volumes frequently challenged for use in secondary classrooms, such as Raina Telgemeier's Drama and Sherman Alexie's The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781496818447
Publisher: University Press of Mississippi
Publication date: 04/13/2018
Series: Children's Literature Association Series
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 372
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

About the Author

Michelle Ann Abate, Columbus, Ohio, is associate professor of literature for children and young adults at The Ohio State University. She is author of The Big Smallness: Niche Marketing, the American Culture Wars, and the New Children's Literature.

Gwen Athene Tarbox, Kalamazoo, Michigan, is professor of English and an affiliate in gender and women's studies at Western Michigan University. She is author of The Clubwomen's Daughters: Collectivist Impulses in Progressive-era Girls' Fiction, 1890-1940 and Children's and Young Adult Comics.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction Gwen Athene Tarbox Michelle Ann Abate 3

Graphic Novels As Comics Storytelling: Word And Image, Form And Genre

1 "This Is a Well-Loved Book": Weighing (in on) Jeff Smith's Bone Annette Wannamaker 19

2 "What Is China but a People and Their (Visual) Stories?" The Synthetic in Narratives of Contest in Gene Luen Yang's Boxers & Saints Karly Marie Grice 32

3 Comics, Adolescents, and the Language of Mental Illness: David Heatley's "Overpeck" and Nate Powell's Swallow Me Whole Sarah Thaller 45

4 Not Haunted, Just Empty: Figurative Representation in Sarah Oleksyk's Ivy Catherine Kyle 59

Hybrid Comics, Transmedial Storytelling, and Graphic Novels in Adaptation

5 "Are You an Artist like Me?!" Do-It-Yourself Diary Books, Critical Reading, and Reader Interaction within the Worlds of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Dork Diaries Series Rachel L. Rickard Rebellino 77

6 Parodic Potty Humor and Superheroic Potentiality in Dav Pilkey's The Adventures of Captain Underpants Joseph Michael Sommers 93

7 Multimodality Is Magic: My Little Pony and Transmedia Strategies in Children's Comics Aaron Kashtan 112

8 Framing Agency: Comics Adaptations of Coraline and City of Ember Meghann Meeusen 126

The Pedagogy of The Panel: Comics Storytelling in The Classroom

9 From Who-ville to Hereville: Integrating Graphic Novels into an Undergraduate Children's Literature Course Gwen Athene Tarbox 141

10 Looking beyond the Scenes: Spatial Storytelling and Masking in Shaun Tan's The Arrival Christiane Buuck Cathy Ryan 154

11 When Young Writers Draw Their Voices: Creating Hybrid Comic Memoirs with Sherman Alexie's The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Michael L. Kersulov Mary Beth Hines Rebecca Rupert 171

Representing Gender and Sexuality in the Comics Medium

12 Unbalanced on the Brink: Adolescent Girls and the Discovery of the Self in Skim and This One Summer Mariko Tamaki Jillian Tamaki Marni Stanley 191

13 The Drama of Coming Out: Censorship and Drama by Raina Telgemeier Eti Berland 205

14 "What the Junk?" Defeating the Velociraptor in the Outhouse with the Lumberjanes Rachel Dean-Ruzicka 218

15 Engendering Friendship: Exploring Jewish and Vampiric Boyhood in Joann Sfar's Little Vampire Rebecca A. Brown 233

16 Gothic Excess and the Body in Vera Brosgol's Anya's Ghost Krystal Howard 247

Drawing on Identity: History, Politics, Culture

17 Graphically/Ubiquitously Separate: The Sanctified Littering of Jack T. Chick's Fundy-Queer Comics Lance Weldy 263

18 Waiting for Spider-Man: Representations of Urban School "Reform" in Marvel Comics' Miles Morales Series David E. Low 278

19 "Walk Together, Children": The Function and Interplay of Comics, History, and Memory in Martin Luther King and the Montgomery Story and John Lewis's March: Book One Joanna C. Davis-McElligatt 298

20 Sita's Ramayana's Negotiation with an Indian Epic Picture Storytelling Tradition Anuja Madan 312

Coda: Whether We Want Them or Not: Building an Aesthetic of Children's Digital Comics Joe Sutliff Sanders 332

About the Contributors 343

Index 348

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