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Graphic Novels as Philosophy$
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Jeff McLaughlin

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781496813275

Published to University Press of Mississippi: May 2019

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496813275.001.0001

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Jimmy Corrigan and the Time of Crisis1

Jimmy Corrigan and the Time of Crisis1

(p.41) Jimmy Corrigan and the Time of Crisis1
Graphic Novels as Philosophy

Manuel “Mandel” Cabrera

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter argues that philosophical questions are often born of crisis. They tend to arise when the people engaged in an endeavor like science or art face the possibility, not so much that their endeavor will not succeed, but that they do not really understand what success would consist of. In art, people may struggle to grasp the nature of artworks; or, to understand what methods, forms, and critical frameworks are appropriate to them. The most important examples of ambivalent proto-philosophical reflection on popular art concern the medium of comics, for which Will Eisner's term “sequential art” has served as a rallying point. The chapter cites Chris Ware's Jimmy Corrigan: the Smartest Kid on Earth in examining how artists have, through their works, struggled with the nature and possibilities of the medium.

Keywords:   philosophical questions, crisis, art, science, nature, comics, sequential art, Will Eisner, Chris Ware

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