Month: February 2016

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BC Publishing Focus: John Pass

by Amber McMillan

Over the next couple of months, The Town Crier will be featuring short interviews with Canadian authors published by BC publishers, conducted by BC publishing professionals. The second in the series is an interview with BC poet Amber McMillan, author of We Can’t Ever Do This Again and John Pass, author of Forecast: Selected Early Poems 1970-1990 (Harbour Publishing).

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Decoding Classics in Contemporary Comics

by Shannon Page

Frequently, and often problematically, the classics of ancient Greece and Rome are used as a kind of shorthand for sophistication. Even the name implies a timeless purity of taste, distinguishing them from media intended for mass consumption. Meanwhile, new branches of classical scholarship are becoming increasingly concerned with the many ways that the literature and history of the ancient Mediterranean world have come to impact contemporary culture.

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A Graphic Essay on Julie Doucet

by Evangeline Freedman

Julie Doucet has published most of her her work through the Montreal-based Drawn & Quarterly, and is one of the most well-known female artists to be published by the company. Her first new work of comics in over a decade will be released next month.

Although she was famously mentioned in a Le Tigre song,

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Write Who You Know

by Laura Kenins

It’s not unusual for men to be treated as serious professionals early in their comics careers, even if they’ve only published a handful of work—to be profiled in the media or discussed alongside other, more well-known authors. It’s rare, however, to hear about young female creators before they’ve received some kind of stamp of approval: best emerging talent award,

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A Day in the Life

by Larissa Diakiw

Editor’s note: Artist and writer Sholem Krishtalka’s A Berlin Diary began as a sort of graphic novel in storyboards on Hazlitt in 2014 (Krishtalka describes it as a “foreign film about a queer Canadian in Berlin”). The project continues on Krishtalka’s blog and has also appeared as an exhibition. Frankie No One investigates the work here in a graphic review.

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Surplus Humanity

by Jason Freure

As part of guest editor Laura Kenins’ month on comics, here Jason delves into Sylvie Rancourt’s graphic novel, Melody: Story of a Nude Dancer (Drawn & Quarterly, 2015). 

Abitibi is one of those parts of the world that people are always leaving. It’s the kind of place people come from whose fathers were miners and whose grandmothers were farmers.

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Getting a Grant to Make Comics in Canada

by Laura Kenins

The one thing that stuck firmly with me from art school was internalizing the Canada Council definition of a professional artist: an education in art, a record of exhibitions, peer recognition, and three years post-graduate before you can apply. I felt reassured in the knowledge that whatever I did later, I’d always be—officially—an artist.

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Exotic is Other People

by Carlos Carmonamedina

Editor’s note: Though neither Canadian nor American comics are known for their unbiased portrayal of non-white characters, this issue is certainly not exclusive to English-language works. Here, Mexican artist Carlos Carmonamedina takes us through racism in Mexican comics of the 20th century and beyond.

You will hardly find another country that debates its own identity as much as Mexico does.

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Comics Criticism: A Reading List

by Laura Kenins

Literature is a dialogue, albeit often an insular one. For comics to occupy a position as a mature literary form, they need to be a part of that dialogue.

I didn’t realize until this week that there’s a crisis in comics criticism. Evidently, I’m part of the problem since I rarely read any comics-specific websites,

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Social Justice through Autobio Comics

by Sandra Cox

I read comics, but not in the “I have a pull-list of 60 at my local store” sort of way, and not in the “I’ve been buying Harvey issues since 1970” sort of way either. I’m not a collector, a creator, or a finger-on-the-pulse-of-the-industry kind of commentator. I read comics in the most pedantic of ways.