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Classics and Comics (Classical Presences)


Classics and Comics (Classical Presences) Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Since at least 1939, when daily-strip caveman Alley Oop time-traveled to the Trojan War, comics have been drawing (on) material from Greek and Roman myth, literature and history. At times the connection is cosmetic-as perhaps with Wonder Woman's Amazonian heritage-and at times it is almost irrelevant-as with Hercules' starfaring adventures in the 1982 Marvel miniseries. But all of these make implicit or explicit claims about the place of classics in modern literary culture.

Classics and Comics is the first book to explore the engagement of classics with the epitome of modern popular literature, the comic book. This volume collects sixteen articles, all specially commissioned for this volume, that look at how classical content is deployed in comics and reconfigured for a modern audience. It opens with a detailed historical introduction surveying the role of classical material in comics since the 1930s. Subsequent chapters cover a broad range of topics, including the incorporation of modern theories of myth into the creation and interpretation of comic books, the appropriation of characters from classical literature and myth, and the reconfiguration of motif into a modern literary medium. Among the well-known comics considered in the collection are Frank Miller's 300 and Sin City, DC Comics' Wonder Woman, Jack Kirby's The Eternals, Neil Gaiman's Sandman, and examples of Japanese manga. The volume also includes an original 12-page "comics-essay," drawn and written by Eisner Award-winning Eric Shanower, creator of the graphic novel series Age of Bronze.

About the Author

George Kovacs teaches at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario.

C.W. Marshall is Associate Professor of Greek and Roman Theatre at the University of British Columbia.

Table of Contents

Preface, C.W. Marshall and George Kovacs


1. Comics and Classics: Establishing a Critical Frame, George Kovacs

Seeing the Past through Sequential Art

2. An Ancient Greek Graphic Novel (P. Oxy. XXII 2331), Gideon Nisbet

3. Sequential Narrative and the Shield of Achilles, Kyle Johnson

4. Declassicizing the classical in Japanese comics, Nicholas A. Theisen

5. Heroes Unlimited, Brett M. Rogers

Gods and Superheroes

6. The Furies, Wonder Woman, and Dream, C. W. Marshall

7. Coming up to Code: Ancient Divinities Revisited, Craig Dethloff

8. The Burden of War: From Homer to Oeming, R. Clinton Simms

9. 'Seven Thunders Utter Their Voices', Benjamin Stevens

Drawing (on) History

10. Hard-Boiled Hot Gates, Vincent Tomasso

11. Persians in Frank Miller's 300 and Greek vase-painting, Emily Fairey

12. A Dream of Augustus, Anise K. Strong

13. Francophone Romes: Antiquity in les Bandes Dessinées, Martin Dinter

The Desires of Troy

14. Twenty-First Century Troy, Eric Shanower

15. Sex and Love in Eric Shanower's Age of Bronze, Chiara Sulprizio

16. Heavy Metal Homer, Thomas E. Jenkins

A reading list of Classics in Comics




Product Details

Kovacs, George
Oxford University Press, USA
Marshall, C. W.
null, George
null, C. W.
Ancient, Classical & Medieval
Classical Studies
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
7.3 x 10 x 1 in 1.45 lb

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Classics » General
Fiction and Poetry » Graphic Novels » Superheroes
History and Social Science » Linguistics » General
Science and Mathematics » Physics » Astrophysics

Classics and Comics (Classical Presences) New Hardcover
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Product details 288 pages Oxford University Press, USA - English 9780199734184 Reviews:
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