Lee, Tain-Dow. 1986. Reforming Film Study at the Level of Higher Education in Taiwan, The Republic of China. The Ohio State University. DAI.
Lefèvre, Pascal. 2003. Willy Vandersteens Suske en Wiske in de krant (1945-1971). Een theoretisch kader voor een vormelijke analyse van strips [Willy Vandersteen's Suske en Wiske in the dailies (1945-1971): A theoretical framework for the formal analysis of comics]. Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Faculteit Sociale Wetenschappen [Social Sciences]. on-line information.
English abstract: Although there are similarities between various media,comics present stories in a unique way: they make use of sequences of drawings,including texts in balloons or boxes. Remarkably, this unique formal communication system has not been studied in depth by the academic world. Compared with the considerable number of theoretical works on literature, film or theatre, the medium of comic art is still very poorly served by the scholars. Since the end of the 1960's, however, some studies have been published. Nevertheless, three decades later,no single academic work has thoroughly covered the various formal techniques of comics.Therefore this study sets out to describe these in a systemic way. Inspired by what Bordwell and Thompson (1977 &2001) have done for cinema,the approach here can be outlined in two basic questions: how does an entire comic function and how do comic techniques contribute to its form? Of course, parts of my work do clearly rely on previous theoretical thinking on comics, but also findings from other fields such as cinema, the study of perception, cognitive psychology, art history and literature are used. Thus, a new comprehensive view on aspects such as drawing, text, panel arrangement and narration is presented.Lipper, Mark M. 1974. Comic Caricatures in Early American Newspapers as Indicators of the National Character. DAI, 1974; 34: 5896A(So. Ill.).
Moreover these general theoretical and analytical findings are tested in a case study of the most popular Flemish comic strip for decades: Suske en Wiske (in English translated as Spike and Suzy,Willy and Wanda or Bob and Bobette). Though the Flemish dailies are still publishing new stories of Suske en Wiske, this study focusses on the 71 stories made by Willy Vandersteen (1913-1990) for the newspapers De Nieuwe Standaard and De Standaard between 1945 and 1971. This analysis shows that Suske en Wiske has a unity and a set of concrete formal techniques,evolving in time.Culture, tradition, personal qualities of the author(s),etc.,they were all influential in the choice of resources; but very important was also the way in which these comics were published.The publication format (namely two tiers in a newspaper) influenced the total concept of the series,both style and content.
Though Vandersteen did not create many new techniques,his combination of a continuity strip with various forms of humor (including self-referential humor), a (fake) family setting, wild imagination and criticism of hot topics is quite unique.
Lococo, Mark Edward. 1995. 'Burned Behind My Eyes': The Dissolution of Invincibility through Performances of the Vietnam War. Northwestern University, Department of Performance Studies. DAI. [War toys, comic books, short stories, poetry]
Lunning, Nancy French. 2000. Comic Books: Sex and Death at the Edge of Modernity. DAI, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 2000 June; 60 (12): 4225. U of Minnesota.
Macdonnell, Francis Michael. 1991. Insidious Foes: The Axis Fifth Column and the American Home Front, 1938-1942. Harvard University. DAI.
Makemson, Harlan E. 2002. Images of Scandal: Political Cartooning in the 1994 Presidential Campaign. University of North Carolina.
Malach, Michele Marie. 2000. You'd Better Dust Off Your Own Black Suit: The FBI in Recent American Film and Television. University of Texas at Austin. DAI.
Marston, Emily Wright. 1982. A Study of Variables Relating to the Voluntary Reading Habits of Eighth Graders. Ed.D. Harvard University. DAI.
Martin, George Ira. 1992. Secondary English Students' Responses to Classics Illustrated Comic Books. Ed.D. University of Virginia. DAI.
Mattozzi, Alvise. 1998. Nuvole Sotterranee. Alaisi Socio-Semiotica del Fumetto Underground. Universita' Degli Studi di Siena, Facolta di Lettere e Filosofia, Corso di Laurea in Scienze della Communicazione. Relatore: Ch.mo Prof. Omar Calabrese.
McFadden, Margaret Theresa. 1996. Anything Goes: Gender and Knowledge in the Comic Popular Culture of the 1930s. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1997 May; 57 (11): 4796. Yale U, 1996 [note: uncertain if this diss mentions comics or not]
McKinney, Edgar Duane. 1990. Images, Realities, and Cultural Transformation in the Missouri Ozarks, 1920-1960. University Of Missouri - Columbia. DAI.
McQuillan, Elizabeth. 2001. The Reception and Creation of Post-1960 Franco-Belgian BD. University of Glasgow.
Merino, Ana. 2001. Las dimensiones narrativas del comic del mundo Hispanico en los limites de la modernidad. (Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Cuba.) University of Pittsburgh. DAI.
Mickelson, Holly Michelle. 2002. Replacing Memory: Comics, Survivorship, and Narrative Rupture in Art Spiegelman's Maus Project. Purdue University. Abstract on-line.
Miller, Jeffrey Alan. 2001. Critical Analysis of Comic Strips: A Semiological Approach. (Roland Barthes.) Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 2001 Oct; 62 (4): 1271. State U of New York, Buffalo.
Monnin, Katie M. 2008. Perceptions of New Literacies with the Graphic Novel 'Bone.' Kent State University. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 2008 Dec; 69 (6): 2188.
Murray, Ross. 2009. Changing Bodies: Representations of Metamorphic Comic Characters. University of Western Sydney, Australia.
Nash, Susan Smith. 1996. Apocalypse in Twentieth-Century Literature, Film, and Cultural Texts: The Persistence and Questioning of the Messianic Vision. The University of Oklahoma. DAI.
Neff, William Albert. 1977. The Pictorial and Linguistic Features of Comic Book Formulas. University of Denver. review by Neil Cohn
Nelson, Sandra G. 1993. J. Minor Gwynn: 1897-1971. (Textbook Writing, North Carolina) Ed.D. University of South Carolina. DAI.
Neustadt, Robert Alan. 1995. (Con)Fusing Signs: Three Spanish-American Encounters with(in) the Postmodern Position. Alejandro Jodorowsky, Guillermo Gomez-Pena and Diamela Eltit. (Mexico, Chile) University Of Oregon. DAI.
Nguyen, Nhu-Hoa. 2009. Narration graphique : l’ellipse comme figure et signe peircéen dans la bande dessinée. Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) Mutifaculty (philosophy, communication and literary studies); program: Ph. D. in semiology. Advisors: Dr. François Latraverse (philosophy) & Dr. Philippe Sohet(communication).
Abstract: Cette thèse a pour but d’analyser le phénomène de l’ellipse dans la narration graphique afin d’y asseoir son rôle souverain. L’étude rend explicite la nature et le fonctionnement d’une technique d’écriture fondamentale qui jusqu’à présent a été reconnue de façon brève, instinctive ou implicite. S’articulant autour de trois axes, ses définitions, ses expressions et la logique de son interprétation, la thèse examine la nature et les caractéristiques de l’ellipse avant de vérifier son opérationnalité dans les bandes dessinées et de faire la lumière sur les étapes inférentielles que traverse toute interprétation possible de la figure.Nyberg, Amy Kiste. 1994. Seal of Approval: The Origins and History of the Comics Code. University of Wisconsin - Madison. Published as Seal of Approval: The History of the Comics Code (Jackson: U P Mississippi, 1998).
Pour ce faire, le premier axe revisite les concepts existants dans quelques champs d’étude principaux, soit la rhétorique, la linguistique, la littérature et la cinématographie. Une fois l’assise théorique générale posée, le deuxième axe porte un regard sur les diverses expressions de ces concepts en bande dessinée à travers une centaine d’occurrences puisées dans une vaste collection internationale, en particulier la France, les États-Unis et le Japon. Le troisième axe détermine le trajet interprétatif de ces expressions au moyen de la trichotomie inférentielle (abduction – déduction – induction) du philosophe pragmatiste Charles S. Peirce.
Les recherches menées ont révélé qu’une compréhension plus complète de l’ellipse passait par d’autres figures rhétoriques de nature semblable qui, elles aussi, adoptent le non-dit et le non-montré comme lieux d’expression. La cohabitation avec ces figures et la confrontation de diverses conceptions de l’ellipse à travers différents domaines ont permis de synthétiser les résultats en une définition applicable généralement. Elles ont aussi donné lieu à une typologie générale, qui peut être modifiée pour s’adapter aux besoins particuliers; en l’occurrence, on s’est retrouvé avec une taxonomie plus détaillée des ellipses en bande dessinée qui couvre les formes des plus courues aux moins courantes. L’application de la classification à l’expression concrète de la bande dessinée a aussi révélé que le transfert des notions rhétoriques amène une modification notable du statut figural des procédés elliptiques, qui présentent un double comportement, tantôt sans aucun changement sémantique, tantôt avec modification de sens.
Par ailleurs, le processus d’interprétation par l’inférence peircéenne a fourni l’outil nécessaire pour confirmer le travail incessant d’interprétation d’une bande dessinée, déterminer de façon logique l’existence d’une ellipse dans sa lecture et élucider la concordance entre les genres de raisonnement logique et les types d’ellipse. Ainsi les ellipses déductives procurent un sentiment de satisfaction dans la pratique de lecture de progression, alors que les ellipses abductives et inductives réjouissent davantage le lecteur de la compréhension, à qui elles ouvrent des horizons riches de possibilités et de probabilités.
Nystrom, Elsa A. 1989. A Rejection of Order: The Development of the Newspaper Comic Strip in America, 1830-1920. Department of History. Loyola University of Chicago. Dissertation Abstracts International 50(7):2215A. [PDFs downloadable @ ICS Lost Works]
Ogi, Fusami. 2001. Reading, Writing, and Female Subjectivity: Gender in Japanese Comics (Manga) for Girls (Shoujo). State University of New York at Stony Brook, Department of Comparative Studies.
Okamoto, Rei. 1999. Pictorial Propaganda in Japanese Comic Art, 1941-1945: Images of the Self and the Other in a Newspaper Strip, Single-Panel Cartoons, and Cartoon Leaflets. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1999 Sept; 60 (3): 580. Temple U.
O'Sullivan, Judith Roberta. 1976. The Art of Winsor Z. McCay (1871-1934). University of Maryland.
Paravisini, Lizabeth. 1982. The Novel as Parody of Popular Narrative Forms in the United States and Latin America: 1963-1980. New York University. DAI.
Park, Sung-Bong. 1993. An Aesthetics of the Popular Arts: An Approach to the Popular Arts from the Aesthetic Point Of View. Fil.Dr. Uppsala Universitet (Sweden). DAI.
Pavlovic, Tatjana. 1996. The Despotic Body and the Nymphomatic Body: Spanish Culture from Francisco Franco to Jesus Franco. University of Washington. DAI.
Peck, Stephen Madry, Jr. 1988. Tense, Aspect and Mood in Guinea-Casamance Portuguese Creole. University Of California, Los Angeles. DAI.
Pérez del Solar, Pedro. 2000. Images of the Desencanto: Spanish Comics, 1979-1986. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 2000 Nov; 61 (5): 1868. Princeton U.
Perraudin, Jean-Yves. 1989. Images of the Elderly in Comic Strips. (Franco-Belgian School) Dr.d'Etat. Universite de Bourgogne (France). DAI.
Pinsky, Michael C. 1998. Future Present: Ethics and/as Science Fiction. University of South Florida. DAI.
Postema, Barbara. 2010. Mind the Gap: Absence as Signifying Function in Comics. Michigan State University, Department of English. Chair: Judith Roof.
This dissertation argues that the gap, which according to Wolfgang Iser’s narrative theory is a characteristic of all fictional narrative, in comics works at all levels of signification. Gaps or absences signify in the drawn image, the page layout, the sequence, and image-text combinations, as well as in the narrative.
Comics images rely on minimizing and absence of information, rather than representation in detail. The notion of the gap as an inherent part of the abstraction that is typical of the comics image is established. The page layout is created by frames and gutters which separate out the individual panels, creating structure and order. The gaps between panels are ultimately the condition for creating sequence and continuity from a series of separate panels. In relation to the layout, gutters are literal gaps, empty spaces on the page, while in relation to the sequence, gutters are gaps in time, gaps in sequences of events that call for interpretation of action rather than of structure.
Another means besides the sequence through which comics offer to close gaps is provided by the insertion of text, the verbal code which as a separate register introduces another way in which to interpret and connect the images in the comics sequence. Text can be another way of bridging gaps between panels. The concept of gaps is familiar from a narratological point of view, as inherent to and productive of narrative. It provides yet another way in comics in which the reader is invited and engaged as a participant. Through the narrative gap, and the recognition of the gap operative at all levels of their signification, comics create a self-awareness of these absences, often by creating narratives in which the gap itself takes on a thematic role, not just a signifying function.
In my interrogation of the function of the gap as creative presence/absence in comics, I take a central characteristic of comics as my theoretical foundation: the form involves a different kind, and in fact many different kinds, of reading, only one of which is the reading of words. The other forms of reading that comics require deal largely with the image. Due to the role of the image in comics, it is sometimes assumed that reading comic comes naturally, that the meaning of these texts is transparent because they are visual. The idea is that it is not necessary to learn this kind of reading, let alone that such texts might require explanation. However, in this age of visual literacy, that view has been superseded. We have learned that images and their power should not be taken for granted, and that images can carry a host of messages.
The process of reading in comics is not natural, is not inherent, and my dissertation sets out to lay bare that process, break down the numerous functions that are actually involved in reading comics. One problem with discussing these levels is that they are all intertwined: when a person reads a comics, the signifying functions of the drawings, the sequence and the story all work at the same time. The gap offers a way of breaking apart the levels of signification. It offers a way into these processes, since the gap operates slightly differently at each level—image, layout, sequence, text-image relations, and narrative.
The area of study to which my work contributes is not a brand new field, but it is certainly still developing. The man who is sometimes hailed as the inventor, the father of comics, Swiss Rodolphe Töpffer, also wrote the first theory of comics, in his Essay on Physiognomy (Essai de Physiognomonie) from 1845. The field has expanded from there, with histories of comics written since the 1940s, and dissertations and sociological studies of comics following shortly after. In terms of the popularization and visibility of comics studies (certainly in North America) two texts have been of great significance: Will Eisner’s Comics and Sequential Art (1985), and Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics (1994). These texts share with Töpffer’s ur-comics study that they are written from the point of view of the writer. While these works analyze the form of comics to some extent, they are mostly invested in a how-to approach, explaining how comics artists can craft their stories, can achieve certain effects.
My own study of comics signification comes at the form from the other side. My analysis is based in the experience of the reader. When a person is faced with a comics text, how does he or she make sense of it? European comics criticism has a longer tradition of comics studies from a readerly point of view, and most often rooted in a semiotic approach, as my dissertation is. Examples of this school are Strips Anders Lezen or Pour une lecture moderne de la bande dessinée by Pascal Lefèvre and Jan Baetens (1993), and Thierry Groensteen’s Système de la bande dessinée (1999). This last work was translated into English in 2007, and marks an important development in American comics criticism: the introduction of the European school of formal analysis of comics. Groensteen’s work has been of some influence on my own. My work is in dialogue with Groensteen’s, building on some of his ideas but creating a vocabulary in English. Also, the francophone tradition of comics studies, not surprisingly, draws on the Francobelgian tradition of Bande Dessinée. This is a tradition of comics that North American readers tend not to be very familiar with, and one that operates quite differently from American comics. Thus, besides furthering the understanding of signification in comics, my work also offers an entry into francophone work on comics by applying theoretical concepts like braiding (tressage) and the multiframe, but applying them in American comics.
At the center of my semiotics of comics is the gap, the notion of creating meaning out of absences. While the gap functions and is coded in different ways for each layer of signification in comics, its presence in all these levels creates the coherence in my understanding of the form. The most familiar conception of the gap in relation to narratology is Wolfgang Iser’s application of the gap or blank as a productive force in narrative, drawing the reader into the process. Comics, like any narrative medium, display this function of the gap. The text that produces the narrative gaps is itself riddled with other gaps and absences as well. Comics narrate in sequences of images, which rely on gaps to create continuity. Actions and movements have to be shown in fragments, in separate images, in order to evoke the complete action. Comics create wholes from holes.
The sequential production of narration, of action, in comics is the result of the layout, which is a feature that is very specific to the comics form. The layout makes the gap literally visible on the page, in the form of the empty gutters between panels. The blanks signal that the sequences of panels signify in relation to one another. The gutter invites an involvement from the reader, who is called upon to produce a continuity, a coherence from the discontinuous fragments shown on the page.
While there are absences between the panels in comics, absences also exist within the panels. Imagery in comics signifies through simplification and abstraction. Its reduction of detail is related to caricature, but the aim of caricature is to foreground and ridicule certain actual qualities of its real-life subjects, which is not generally the case with comics drawings. The cartoon style of drawing in comics contains gaps in its lack of detail. The images make up for a lack of information through the use of strong outlines. In what Rudolf Arnheim calls the “completion effect,” the reader is again called upon to fill in the absent information.
Besides the gap, the signifying processes of comics share another, though related, feature, namely a representational economy. At all levels of comics signification the discourse displays an economy of detail. From the point of view of the writer/artist in comics the question always seems to be: how little can I show, how much can I leave out, and still produce a viable narrative. I use Charles Schulz’ Peanuts throughout to illustrate this economy of image, of sequence, even of narration.
The gaps and openings that are left on the comics page create space for the production of meaning. Signification is a dynamic process in comics, one that requires reading multiple layers of meaning at the same time. Although all these layers of signification involve a similar process, namely finding and filling in absences, these gaps are created using different codes and signs at each level of signification (drawings, layout, sequence, narrative), and consequently they require different forms of decoding at each level. One might think that all these different layers would become incomprehensible, that the variety of different codes used, and the complexity of signifying systems would be overwhelming. Comics, however, communicate instructions for how to read them along with their narrative, through their very use of codes. In my dissertation I have brought those latent codes to the forefront and show how they work in a number of different texts. This analysis denaturalizes the various kinds of reading that comics require, and shows the sophisticated processes of signification at work.
Comics supply readers with the keys to their decoding. Through conventions, in their application of self-referentiality, and often by reference to other media, comics provide both the text and the manual for how to read that text. This is once again a way in which comics very directly involve and address their readers. What needs to be inserted into the gap that is left in comics, is, ultimately, the reader.
Price, Penelope. 1985. Gravity's Rainbow: Thomas Pynchon's Use Of The Media. Arizona State University. DAI.
Proctor, Phyllis A. 1973. Mexico's Supermachos: Satire and Social Revolution in Comics by Rius. Dissertation Abstracts International, 1973; 33: 5138A(Texas, Austin).
Pustz, Matthew John. 1998. Fanboys and True Believers: Comic Book Reading Communities and the Creation of Culture. University of Iowa. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1998 Nov; 59 (5): 1636.
Riedemann, Kai. 1987. Comic, Kontext, Kommunikation : die Kontextabhängigkeit der visuellen Elemente im Comic Strip, exemplarisch untersucht an der Gag-Strip-Serie Peanuts. Universität Hamburg. Published with the same title (Frankfurt am Main and New York: P. Lang, 1988); ISBN 3631403682. WorldCat.
Rios Soto, Marilyn. 2000. El papel del lector en la novela 'La ley del amor' de Laura Esquivel. (Mexico) University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez. DAI.
Roberts, Garyn Glyn. 1987. Black Days, Grotesque Rogues and Square-Jawed Justice: The World of Dick Tracy. Dissertation Abstracts International 47(9; Mar):3463A.
Roberts-Jones, Philippe. 1954. La caricature française entre 1860 et 1890. Université Libre de Bruxelles (Brussels). (published as: De Daumier à Lautrec : Essai sur l’histoire de la caricature française entre 1860 et 1890, Paris: Les Beaux-Arts, 1960.)
Rodman, Gilbert Brinkley. 1996. Elvis after Elvis: The Posthumous Career of a Living Legend. University of Chicago at Urbana-Champaign. DAI.
Roemer, Richard Dean. 1995. The Thief of Bad Gags: Charles Ludlam and the Ridiculous Theatrical Company. A Serious Look at a 'Ridiculosity.' (Gay studies) Universtiy of California, Los Angeles. DAI.
Rogers, Mark Christiancy. 1997. Beyond Bang! Pow! Zap!: Genre and the Evolution of the American Comic Book Industry. University of Michigan, Program in American Culture. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1997 Nov; 58 (5): 1783-84. [Note: MLA mistakenly lists the first word of the title as "Beyong"]
Rosen, Elizabeth K. 2005. Apocalyptic Transformations: The Secularization of Apocalypse in Contemporary Fiction and Film. University College London. Committee members: Adam Roberts, Paul Giles, supervisors Danny Karlin, Pamela Thurschwell. Publication information: Apocalyptic Transformation: Apocalypse and the Postmodern Imagination (Lexington Books, 2008).
Description: An exploration of how postmodern writers and filmmakers have adapted the myth of apocalypse in their work. The study explores how our understanding of apocalypse has changed in the twentieth century, the sociological purposes of telling apocalyptic stories, and what happens when postmodern creators begin to use a rigid paradigm such as the story of apocalypse in their work. Contains a chapter on Alan Moore's apocalyptic comics.
Round, Julia Valerie. 2006. From comic book to graphic novel: writing, reading, semiotics. University of Bristol, UK. Department of English. PhD thesis. More info at www.juliaround.com. An article drawn from this thesis ('Fragmented Identity: the superhero condition') was published in the International Journal of Comic Art 7.2 (2005): 358-369.
Abstract: This dissertation discusses how changes within the authorship, reading practices and criticism of contemporary American comics can alert us to more general questions raised by the inclusion of popular culture in literature. It employs a cultural materialist methodology; researching the first decade of the DC Vertigo imprint (launched in 1993) and considering these texts both as the culmination of trends that can be traced throughout the industry’s history, and as modern literature that sustains elements of certain literary genres.
It begins by summarising the American comics industry’s progress historically and uses review of literary criticism to examine comics’ progression from marginalised ‘funny books’ to cult literature to academic and mainstream acceptance. It then considers the Vertigo comics from a variety of perspectives, researching the ways in which they represent the continuance and culmination of thematic and structural elements perceived in the literary genres of the Gothic, Myth, and the Fantastic.
These elements are returned to as it subsequently approaches the Vertigo comics as postmodern artefacts, examining the ways in which this imprint has contributed to the reinvention of both the concept and material form of comics, and concludes with a case study that applies semiotic theories of text and image, showing how notions of the sign are affected by the hybrid nature of the medium. As an interdisciplinary study this research considers the Vertigo comics in relation to their history, their surroundings and readership, and to other forms of cultural/literary output past and present; grounding textual issues in a historical context and reflecting on critical discourse that typically sets literature against popular culture.
Rubenstein, Anne G. 1994. Mexico 'Sin Vicios': Conservatives, Comic Books, Censorship and the Mexican State, 1934-1976. Rutgers the State University of New Jersey - New Brunswick. DAI. On-line information.
Ruch, William Vaughn. 1980. Communicating in Their Terms. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. DAI.
Runnels, Marti Ray. 1989. Lee Breuer and His Cross-Cultural American Classicism. Texas Tech University. DAI.
Saraiva Mendes, Maria Regina. 1991. The Educational Role of Comic Strips: A Study of Sexual Stereotypes. Public D. Universitat Autonoma De Barcelona (Spain). DAI.
Saunero, Veronica Hazel. 1989. Towards a Definition of the New Spanish-American Essay in the Essayistic Texts of Julio Cortazar. (Spanish Text; Argentina) The Pennsylvania State University. DAI.
Schechter, Russell. 1991. Iron Cage Aesthetics: Rationalization and Revisionism in Postmodern Popular Culture. University of Southern California. DAI.
Schwibbe, Michael H. 1988. Das Bild der Frau bei Wilhelm Busch : ein inhaltsanalytischer Vergleich zu Bilderromanen, Schwänken, Märchen und Sagen. Göttingen : E.Goltze.
Sears, Cornelia. 1997. Africa in the American mind, 1870-1955: A study in Mythology, Ideology and the Reconstruction of Race. University of California, Berkeley. DAI.
Smith, Rodney Dale. 1979. A Study of the International Political Events and Commentary in Selected American Comic Strips from 1940 - 1970. Ed.D. Ball State University. DAI.
Soper, Kerry David. 1998. Seriously Funny: A History of Satirical Newspaper Comic Strips in Twentieth Century United States. Emory University. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1998 Oct; 59 (4): 1228.
Spaulding, Amy E. 1983. Closet Drama for Children: A Study of the Picture Book as Storyboard. [D.L.S dissertation] Columbia University. Published as The Page as Stage Set: Storyboad Picture Books (Metuchen, NJ & London: Scarecrow P, 1995)
Stall, Robin Carin. 2000. Using Comics to Teach Multiple Meaning of Words. University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section B: The Sciences and Engineering, 2001 Apr; 61 (10): 5270.
Steiling, David A. 2006. Icon, Representation and Virtual Reality in Reading the Graphic Narrative. University of South Florida, Dept. of English. Major Professor Phillip Sipiora, Ph.D.; committee: Silvio Gaggi, Ph.D.; Victor Peppard, Ph.D.; Joseph Moxley, Ph.D. Downloadable version available
Abstract: “Icon,”“representation,” and “virtuality,” are key elements to consider when reading multi-modal narratives, including graphic narratives. By considering in detail how these elements are realized in various examples, the author shows how the study of the comics can lay groundwork for critical reading across the technological continuum of storytelling. The author looks at how icon, representation, and virtuality interact in a reading of William Hogarth’s A Harlot’s Progress. He then examines each term in more detail through readings of a variety of graphic narratives including Max Ernst’s, Une Semaine de Bonte, Winsor McCay’s Little Nemo in Slumberland, Kurt Vonnegut’s Breakfast of Champions, Craig Thompson’s Blankets, Phoebe Gloeckner’s Diary of a Teenage Girl, and Posy Simmonds’s Gemma Bovery.
The author distinguishes between two types of virtuality, internal and external, and ties the construction of virtuality to reader response theory. In exploring issues related to the icon, the author builds on Scott McCloud’s conjecture that the iconic character is the means through which the reader inhabits the virtual space of the graphic story. The author advances the proposition that icons are metonymies and that graphic narratives are centered in metonymic, not metaphoric devices. He also undertakes a discussion of how icon operates within the expanding tradition of the “illustrated novel.” Throughout the dissertation an attempt is made to express observation and analysis through continuous instead of binary descriptors in order to emphasize the cooperative rather than oppositional arrangements of word and image within the graphic narrative. The dissertation concludes with an extended examination of Will Eisner’s contention that the use of stereotype is a necessity in graphic storytelling. Examples from Frederik Strömberg’s Black Images in the Comics are used to test this theory and illustrate its consequences. The treatise finishes with an analysis of approaches to representation that avoid stereotypical treatment, are inclusive but sufficiently flexible to operate through caricature. These observations are applied to issues of characterization and representation in electronic gaming narrative. The author concludes that ethics, effectiveness, reputation and empathy are all compromised when artists resort to stereotypes.
Swartz, John Alan. 1978. The Anatomy of the Comic Strip and the Value World of Kids. Ohio State University. WorldCat.
Takahashi, Maki. 2002. It is Hard to be Ordinary: An Analysis of Language Use in 'Maboroshi no Futsuu Shoojo' (Japanese, Shungiku Uchida). University of Kentucky. DAI.
Thalheimer, Anne. 2002. Terrorists, Bitches, and Dykes: Gender, Violence, and Heteroideology in Late 20th-Century Lesbian Comix. University of Delaware. DAI, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences (DAIA) 2002 Sept; 63 (3): 939. Abstract no: DA3046632
Tinker, Emma. 2009. Identity and Form in Alternative Comics 1967 - 2007. University College, London. complete thesis online
Thorn, Matthew Allen. [forthcoming.] Unlikely Explorers: An Ethnography of the Community of Japanese Girls' and Women's Comic Books. New York: Columbia University.
Tjardes, Susan E. 1996. Televisual Literacy, Producerly Texts and the Serialized Graphic Narrative: The Rhetorical and Satirical Potential of 'Doonesbury.' University of Iowa. Dissertation Abstracts International, 1996 Nov; 57 (5): 1897A.
Tondro, Jason William. 2008. An Imaginary Mongoose: Comics, Canon, and the Superhero Romance. University of California Riverside. Committee Members: Dr. Stanley Stewart, Dr. John Ganim, Dr. John Briggs. Published through ProQuest and in hard copy at UCR Rivera Library.
Abstract: "An Imaginary Mongoose" argues that the superhero is a continuation of the romance tradition, exemplified by works like Malory's Morte d'Arthur and Spenser's Faerie Queene. The project argues that not only can we better read and analyze superhero romances equipped with a knowledge of Medieval and Renaissance literature, but that the opposite is also true; because the superhero romance grapples with many of the same themes and problems that canon romances do, an awareness of superhero literature and comics criticism is useful to the scholar of traditional literature.
Chapter One examines Spenser's Faerie Queene, especially Britomart, Arthegall, and Talus "the yron man." Superheroes like Captain America help us understand Spenser's use of "shadows," allegorical characters who represent one facet of a real individual (such as Elizabeth). Iron Ma' s struggle with alcoholism illuminates the importance of self-control in both the superhero romance and the knight who is his forebear. Tony Stark's slippery identity, often confused by his superhuman suit and his identification with it, help us to understand how Arthegall's identity as the Knight of Justice is temporarily bestowed instead on Britomart, who acts as an exemplar.
Chapter Two surveys the use of Arthurian myth in comics, and creates adjectival categories which may be applied in a non-exclusionary manner to these Arthurian comics.
Chapter Three is a close reading of three comics by Grant Morrison -- JLA, The Invisibles, and Seven Soldiers of Victory -- focusing on his use of the Holy Grail. His Arthurian sources, including Wolfram von Eschenbach, Wagner, Chretien, and Malory, are traced. Morrison's Grail is a symbol of communion, of the exchange of ideas between forces which seem opposite but are, in fact, the same.
Finally, Chapter Four is an analysis of Jack Kirby's "Fourth World" epic, with a comparison made to Ben Jonson s innovative work on the court masque. The Judeo-Christian and anti-fascist elements of the two-year experiment are unpacked, challenges of collaboration are examined, and the argument is made that, like Jonson, Kirby took a well-established form known for its limitations and went beyond those limitations to make the genre definitively his own.
Tousignant, Nathalie. 1995. Les manifestations publiques du lien colonial entre la belgique et le congo belge (1897-1988). Universite Laval (Canada). DAI.
Vergara, Robert A., II. 1990. Humanizing Mass Media: Alternative Approaches to Comic Books During Allende's Chile (1970-1973). Ed.D. Northern Illinois University, Department of Leadership and Educational Policy Studies.
Verster, François Philippus. 2003. ’n Kultuurhistoriese ontleding van pikturale humor, met besondere verwysing na die werk van T.O. Honiball. [English translation: A cultural-historical analysis of pictorial humor, with special reference to the work of T.O. Honiball]. D.Phil. University of Stellenbosch, South Africa. Committee members: Dr Dorothea van Zyl, Dr Celestine Pretorius, Dr Mathilda Burden. Email address: email@example.com. http://uk.geocities.com/fp_verster, http://www.sun-e-shop.co.za, http://StellenboschWriters.com, http://StellenboschArtists.com. Publication info: Honiball 100 (CD ROM, 2004) –includes complete dissertation in Afrikaans and English translation of shortened book (TO Honiball: Culture with a smile, 2004). In 2005 the book Van Kaspaas tot Kaas: die lewe en werk van TO Honiball was published. All publications by African Sun Media, publishing house of the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa.
Abstract: Thomas Ochse Honiball (1905 – 1990) created several comic strips in Afrikaans, the first to do so successfully on a continuous basis (over 40 years), while also working as a book illustrator and political cartoonist for the National Press, known as the voice of the political system of Apartheid (separate development of races) in South Africa. His cartoons are reputed to have made a major impact in rallying the white population to vote for Apartheid in 1948. Ironically Honiball was no racist himself and preferred to write and draw his well-loved comic strips. His most popular strips were Oom Kaspaas (Uncle Casper), Jakkals en Wolf (Jackal and Wolf) and Adoons-hulle (Adonis and Company). Because South Africans are not great readers of comics his popularity is all the more remarkable and because Afrikaans readers are not well versed in comic literature, the first volume of this dissertation (650 pages, 400 illustrations in total) focus on a general background of comics, cartoons and caricature (definitions, origin, historical development, comparisons), as well as a history of South African pictorial humor. The life and work of Honiball is discussed in the second volume, with comparisons between his work as that of icons like Carl Giles and Charles Schultz.
Villaverde, Leila Edith. 1999. Mapping Discourse, Art, and Politics in the Construction of Pedagogy. Pennsylvania State University. DAI.
Volper, Ronald Jay. 1975. Feminist Goals as Depicted in the Behavior of the Husband Versus the Wife in Selected American Family Comic Strips from 1960-1974 - A Content Analysis. New York University. DAI.
Wainer, Alex Myer. 1996. Mythic Expression in Comic Book Technique: Mythopoeic Aspects of Batman. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1998 June; 58 (12): 4486. Regent U.
Walowit, Karen. 1974. Wonder Woman: Enigmatic Heroine of American Polular Culture. University of California-Berkeley.
Walsh, Susan F. 1999. Modifying Risk Perceptions of Japanese University Students Using a Culturally Compatible Mode of Instruction. Ed.D. West Virginia University. DAI.
Warburton, Terrence L. 1984. Toward a Theory of Humor: An Analysis of the Verbal and Nonverbal Codes In 'Pogo.' University Of Denver. DAI.
West, Mark Irwin. 1983. Defenders of Childhood Innocence: Reformer Responses to Children's Culture In America, 1878-1954. Bowling Green State University. DAI.
Westbrook, Matthew David. 1997. Invisible Countries: The Poetics of the American Information Commodity, 1891-1919. University of Michigan. DAI.
Weston, Joan. 2000. Comic Books, Superheroes, and Boys: Superhero Comic Books in the Everyday Life of Preadolescent Boys. University of California, Santa Barbara. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 2001 Mar; 61 (9): 3788.
Whitney, Patricia. 1994. Influences on Grade-Five Students' Decisions to Read: An Exploratory Study of Leisure Reading Behavior. University of British Columbia. DAI.
Wiedemer, Caroline Alice. 1994. Reconstructing Sites: Representations of the Holocaust in Postwar Literary, Cinematic, and Memorial Texts. (Comic books, France) Princeton University. DAI.
Wienhöfer, Friederike. 1979. Untersuchungen zur semiotischen Ästhetik des Comic Strip unter der besonderen Berucksichtigung von Onomatopoese und Typographie. Zur Grundlage einer Comic Didaktik. Dortmund
Williams, Jeffery Littleton. 1999. Culture, Theory, and Graphic Fiction. Texas Tech University. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1999 Nov; 60 (5): 1538.
Winchester, Mark David. 1995. Cartoon Theatricals from 1896 to 1927: Gus Hill's Cartoon Shows for the American Road Theatre. Ohio State University. Dissertation Abstracts International, 1995 Dec; 56 (6): 2047A-48A.
Witek, Joseph Patrick. 1988. 'Stranger and More Thrilling than Fiction': Comic Books as History. Vanderbilt University. Published as Comic Books as History: The Narrative Art of Jack Jackson, Art Spiegelman, and Harvey Pekar. (Jackson and London: UP of Mississippi, 1989).
Wright, Bradford Walker. 1998. The American Comic Book: A Cultural History. Purdue University. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1999 Feb; 59 (8): 3176.
Yarian, Sharon. 1975. The Comic Book Hero, a Cultural Fantasy. Adelphi University. Dissertation Abstracts International, 1975; 35: 4205B-06B.
Young, William Henry. 1969. Images of Order: American Comic Strips During the Depression, 1929-1938. Emory University. Dissertation Abstracts International, 1969; 30: 2049A-50A.
Yu, Kie-Un. 1999. The Development of the Korean Animation Industry: Historical, Economic, and Cultural Perspectives. Temple University. DAI.
Yus, Francisco. 1995. Pragmatica y Relevancia. Un modelo escripto-iconico aplicado al discurso del comic ingles [Pragmatics and relevance. A verbal-visual model applied to the discourse of English comics]. University of Alicante, Department of English Studies. Published as two books. The first one comprises the first part of the thesis, while the second book is about parts second and third: (1) Cooperacion y relevancia. Dos aproximaciones pragmaticas a la interpretacion. Alicante: University of Alicante, Servicio de Publicaciones, 1997; (2) La interpretacion y la imagen de masas. Alicante: Instituto Juan Gil-Albert, 1997. See also: Dr. Yus' website; Relevance Theory Online Bibliographic Service.
English Abstract: The thesis has three main parts. In the first one, there is an introduction to the pragmatic perspective and, especially, to Sperber and Wilson’s relevance theory, which is an essential cognitive model throughout the book. The second part is devoted to building up a model of communication (so-called "escripto-icónico") based on four dichotomies: (a) whether communication takes place directly between the author of the (media) discourse and the reader/spectator or it takes place between characters inside the plot of the story narrated in the discourse; (b) whether communication is intentional or it is exuded, as it were, from the author/character without a prior intentionality (if intentional, several sub-intentions are proposed: author-oriented, character-oriented, overt, covert, direct and indirect); (c) whether communication is achieved through verbal or nonverbal means; and (d) whether interpretation is efficient (in the sense that the addressee picks up precisely the sender’s [author or character] intended interpretation) or not. These four dichotomies (a-d) are then combined and the outcome is a set of sixteen categories, each of them with four preliminary attributes: channel of transmission, intentionality, type of discourse and interpretive efficiency. The sixteen categories form what a verbal-visual model of communication. The third part is devoted to an application of these sixteen categories to the different varieties of communication that can be found in British comics, although the model can be applied to any verbal-visual discourse.
Zambrano, Wa-Ki Fraser De. 1996. El discurso colonial/postcolonial y el erotismo en las novelas de dos escritoras: reedicion del encuentro, conquista y colonizacion de America. The University of Iowa, DAI Vol. 57:05A, p. 2058. On-line information at the bottom of this page.
Zitawi, Jehan Ibrahim. 2004. The Translation of Disney Comics in the Arab World: A Pragmatic Perspective. Centre for Translation and Intercultural Studies (CTIS), School of Modern Languages, University of Manchester, UK. External examiner: Dr. Zahia Salhi, Middle Eastern Studies, University of Leeds; internal examiner: Penny Brown, French Studies, University of Manchester. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Abstract: The vast majority of studies drawing on pragmatics have focused on conversation and face-to-face interaction, with little or no attention paid to written text. Like much of pragmatic theory, Brown and Levinson’s politeness theory also focuses on spoken discourse. At the same time, politeness theory claims to offer a universal framework for the study of politeness across different cultures and, one would therefore assume, across different genres of discourse. This study attempts to examine the applicability of the Brown and Levinson model to a particularly challenging genre, namely Disney comics, and to extend the model beyond monolingual and monocultural contexts, to look at politeness strategies in translation between two very different cultures. The study thus sets out to test politeness theory to ascertain whether it can offer credible and coherent explanations of the potential for comics in translation to threaten the face(s) of Arab readers, and whether it can provide a robust framework for describing the pragmatic strategies employed by translators seeking to maintain the face(s) of Arab readers.Zurier, Rebecca. 1988. Picturing The City: New York in the Press and the Art of the Aschan School, 1890-1917. (Volume I: Text. Volume Ii: Text And Illustrations; Illustrations Not Microfilmed As Part Of Dissertation) Yale University. DAI.
study argues that Brown and
Levinson’s politeness theory can be fruitfully applied to
translated from English into Arabic, provided we can demonstrate that
(a) it is
possible to identify a composite speaker and composite hearer in Disney
and (b) Disney comics can be read as face threatening texts (FTTs).
comics are simply texts that have writers and readers. However, the
nature of this discourse and the attempt to contextualise it within a
different culture – Arab culture – point to certain
limitations of the
and Levinson model. At the same time, they enable us to propose ways in
the model may be refined to read the nuances of complex discourses,
Disney comics, that are normative and manipulative in nature while
themselves as benign entertainment.
The data used in this study consists of 278 Disney comic stories: 140 English stories and 138 Arabic stories translated and published by Dar Al-Hilal in
The starting point of the analysis is a conventional application of Brown and Levinson’s politeness theory to original and translated Disney comics, looking specifically at three sources of face threat in this context: verbal and/or visual signals that can be considered taboo or at least unpalatable to the reader; the raising of sensitive or divisive topics (e.g., Jewish and Christian imagery and colonial ideologies, stereotyping and ridiculing the target reader); and the use of address terms and other status-marked identifications that may be misidentified in an offensive or embarrassing way, either intentionally or accidentally. Politeness strategies used by Arab publishers and translators in the data examined in this study include all three categories proposed by Brown and Levinson: Don’t do the FTA; Do the FTA on record with mitigation; and Do the FTA baldly with no mitigation. However, the study also reveals a number of weaknesses inherent in the Brown and Levinson model and highlights the need to refine politeness theory in order to make it more applicable to the analysis of complex genres such as comics and complex types of face threat encoded in discourses which are normative in nature but which present themselves as benign.
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Sources: Apart from general Internet searches, the following resources were consulted: The Modern Language Association Bibliography, 1969-2002; The Comics Research Bibliography; The Comics Scholars Discussion List; Dissertation Abstracts International; The Dreaming; Michigan State University Library's Catalog Info on "Dissertations About Comics"; WorldCat; personal corresponences. Special thanks to Martin de la Iglesia, Fabio Gadducci, Mark Rogers, Michael Rhode, and Leonard Rifas.
Publicity: Information about this site was originally posted to the Comics Scholars Discussion List. Thanks to the following resources for mentioning this site: EGON; Hijinx Comics; ¡Journalista!: The Comics Journal' Weblog by Dirk Deppey (9th item down).