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Comic Book Nation - The Transformation of Youth Culture in America [Anglais] [Broché]

Bradford W Wright
5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
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Descriptions du produit

Comic Book Nation A history of comic books as both a medium of artistic expression and an industry, this book traces the ways in which comic books have reflected national events and attitudes, from Superman's Depression-era battles against corporate villains to Spider-Man's confrontations with student protestors.

Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 352 pages
  • Editeur : Johns Hopkins University Press; Édition : New Ed (17 octobre 2003)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0801874505
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801874505
  • Dimensions du produit: 25,9 x 17,2 x 2,5 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 117.193 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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Dans ce livre (En savoir plus)
Première phrase
Few enduring expressions of American popular culture are so instantly recognizable and still so poorly understood as comic books. Lire la première page
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Concordance
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Un livre complet et agréable 22 avril 2002
Format:Relié
Cette histoire des comic books est très bien faite dans la mesure où elle developpe à la fois l'histoire de l'industrie des Bd américaines et l'évolution des histoires des personnages de comic books. Un livre pour fans, pour spécialistes ou tout simplement pour gens curieux.
En outre, la reliure est très agréable.
C'est un beau livre. C'est un bon livre.
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Amazon.com: 4.6 étoiles sur 5  25 commentaires
23 internautes sur 25 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Thorough survey of the business and culture of comic books 14 janvier 2003
Par D. Cloyce Smith - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
In jargon-free, exuberant prose, Bradford Wright has written what may well be the definitive history of comic books. As Wright notes in his introduction, however, since his investigation is also a survey of mass adolescent culture, he properly focuses on "popular" commercial magazines--especially on superhero-themed comics--to the exclusion of newspaper funnies (like Dick Tracy and Li'l Abner), underground comics and graphic novels (such as works by R. Crumb and Daniel Clowes), and cartoon series for children (Archie and the Disney characters).
Painstakingly researched, "Comic Book Nation" is really three books in one. Wright provides both plot outlines and summaries of trends in subject matter, from the launch of Superman to the sinister underworld of the Watchmen. He also places those themes and developments in the larger cultural context, from Depression-era longings and liberalism, through the patriotism induced by World War II and the Cold War, to the anti-crime vigilantism of the Reagan era. Finally, he charts the multiple peaks and valleys experienced by the business itself: its unpredictable sales patterns, the unhappiness of its work force, the rise and fall of the largest publishers, and the takeover of the industry by corporate and licensing interests. Along the way, he examines the 1940s and 1950s backlash against the violent and sexual nature of comic books (which resulted in the Comics Code Authority, an agency of censorship unparalleled in its broad sweep and its power); the heyday of EC Comics, purveyor of classics ranging from "Tales from the Crypt" to "Mad Magazine"; and the brilliant, original creation of "Spider-Man" and the succeeding generation of reluctant, misunderstood heroes.
Wright wisely avoids making aesthetic judgments, and it's a tribute to his objectivity that readers would have a difficult time figuring out which series rank among the author's own favorites. Likewise, although Wright's left-of-center political judgments are on display throughout (and I confess I often found myself in agreement with him), he is consistently even-handed and empathetic when discussing the advocates of censorship (like Fredric Wertham) and the creators of more "patriotic" and even propagandistic comic books (such as Charlton Publications).
Not having read a superhero-themed comic book in years, I admit I was drawn to buy and read this book by Michael Chabon's "Kavalier and Clay," and I can confirm that this is a great book for readers of that novel who want to learn more. Although I imagine that some comic book fans (especially young readers) might find Wright's study long on analysis and short on comics, "Comic Book Nation" is truly a seminal contribution to the field of culture studies.
14 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Look... Up in the Sky! 8 juin 2001
Par G. Malchiodi - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
Bought this book and devoured it in three days. Informative for the comic book fan and non-fan alike, though the fan will likely know much of the historical/anecdotal material about the creators and creation of the key superheroic icons.
Wright clearly establishes that the comics were/are very much part of the cultural milieu from which they emerge and he parallels the various shifts in narrative and focus to what was happening in American society at that specific time. I believe he is less successful in establishing the material represented by his sub-title: how youth culture is transformed by the comics rather than how youth culture is reflected by the comics (I came away with more of the reflection aspect after reading this book).
The book does not address the "Image-era" of comics; that is, when the youth of America became swayed by badly written, poorly drawn, highly and gratuitiously violent comics of little substance. Here, I think, is an additional chapter in which the symbiotic (and not always positive) relationship between pop-culture and society should have been addressed... especially since the Image books were a direct, if unexpected, outgrowth of the ultra-violence and star-making power of Watchmen and The Dark Knight Returns which Wright does discuss in some depth. The Vertigo line of books also gets short shrift... perhaps because the audience for these is older?
Still and all, as Wright himself states, there are woefully FEW "serious" or "academic" texts about comics. No true fan, especially the perennial fans like myself who outgrow the intended audience of the comics but refuse to let go, should be without this text. Well done.
33 internautes sur 43 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Thorough, Up Until the 1990s. 12 décembre 2001
Par Matthew J. Wolf-Meyer - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
The history of comic books has thus far been written tangentially in other studies of comics, and slanted toward the individual theses of the given author's work; only by splicing histories from a variety of sources could the history of comics be achieved, thus causing an impediment to understand the history of the medium for new scholars approaching the field. Bradford W. Wright's Comic Book Nation should provide new comic book scholars with an appropriate historical understanding of a complex medium, and while it may prove to be repetitive for readers familiar with the history of comic books, for scholars new to the field, Comic Book Nation is indispensable as a single-volume study. Ron Goulart's Great History of Comic Books (1986) was marred with inaccuracies; Richard Reynolds' Superheroes: A Modern Mythology (1992), while theoretically vital to the study of the field, largely eschewed historical analysis; William Savage's Comic Books and America: 1945-1954 (1990), which Wright acknowledges his debt to, focused too narrowly on an anomalous era of comic book publishing (at the end of the Golden Age typified by the comics published during the Second World War and previous to the Silver Age, embodied by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's work at Marvel Comics), much like Amy Nyberg's Seal of Approval (1998), which focused on the era of comic book censorship in the 1950s. Wright approaches the whole of comic book history, and while he suffers from lack of analytical depth, he provides future scholars with an indispensable point of analytical departure.
The greatest flaw I find in Wright's work is that his history largely ignores the developments of post-1960s comic book publishing, wholly excising both DC Comic's "mature" imprint Vertigo and the conglomeration of capital-minded artists that formed Image Comics in the early 1990s. The vast majority of Comic Book Nation takes place prior to 1960 (179 pages by my count, chapters 1-6), relegating the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s to their own chapters, with the events of the 1990s piggybacking the 1980s in single chapter: Considering the great upheavals that occurred in the 1990s, Wright's avoidance of these issues mars his attempted history. The British invasion of comics, largely evidenced in the comics released through Vertigo, marked an ideological shift in popularity: Neil Gaiman's widely acknowledged Sandman series solidified the High Art qualities for comics that Alan Moore had earlier explored in Miracleman, Watchmen, and Swamp Thing (the latter receiving no mention whatsoever); within fandom, Grant Morrison's Doom Patrol and Animal Man are seen as essential deconstructive approaches to superheroes; Garth Ennis's Preacher divorced itself from limiting superhero narratives to explore the genre implications of horror and the western while scathingly critiquing American culture (as Ennis's Hellblazer had done previously); and Warren Ellis's Transmetropolitan imagined a future America, spoiled by consumerism and bleakly sardonic. All of these titles were widely popular, and Wright mentions none of them. Similarly, the omission of Image Comics belies an ignorance of the growing importance that artists attributed to themselves, priding themselves over the content of the stories or even the iconic heroes that they drew. Spawn, Todd McFarlane's initial series with Image Comics, was so widely popular as to facilitate an HBO cartoon, a movie, numerous toys, and spin-off series, all based upon the art of the series, which featured dismally written stories. What, it seems fair to ask in a cultural history of comic books, is the cultural implication of prizing artists over writers or the superheroes themselves? Unfortunately, Wright doesn't ask this question or bother to answer it.
Additionally, Wright makes broad historical claims throughout his study, and while he takes the time to properly cite the comics that he thoroughly summarizes, he rarely, if ever, cites historical texts for informing his critique of history. Claims such as "Yet even DC's sales dropped significantly after the [CMAA] code (which censored comics), largely due to competition from television" (182) are common occurrences and play with the reader's understanding of history: Historians might find Wright's cultural history of comic books more a study of individual comics than the cultural forces that conspired to inform such - and find themselves rather aggravated at Wright's constant summarization of American history (his sweeping historical claims also include non-comic related events, which, although I question them, have little relation to my studies and are thus more difficult to refute). It would be impossible to claim that the declining popularity in comics was attributed to a single factor, like television, and while Wright explains that comics competed for recreational time that was growing more scarce (cinema, music, and traditional reading materials all struggling for dominance), he fails to make mention of the changes in DC's editorial policy that effected the content of the comics, making them much more light-hearted than their war time predecessors.
Rather than providing a bibliography for comic book scholars to adopt in their future studies, Wright closes his study with a brief note on his sources which reads more like a list of personal favorites than a proper bibliography; due to the diasporic publishing of such, and their often cryptic titles, a bibliography of published scholarly articles on comic books would helpfully progress the study of comic books and provide interested scholars with sufficient foundational knowledge. Scholars interested in studying comics will greatly benefit from reading Comic Book Nation, but rather than the equivalent of Brian Aldiss' history of science fiction, Trillion Year Spree, readers will find only a starting point for their own studies rather than an authoritative reference tool.
9 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Wright Probes the Importance of Popular Culture 24 février 2002
Par rs - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
This book weaves together three important strands of American cultural and social history between 1933 and the early 1990's. First, Bradford W. Wright relates the history of the comic book industry, developing his account around a series of themes such as superheroes, social problems, race, the Cold War, militarism, and revolt. Second, this thematic material is used as the springboard for a thoughtful reflection on the social development of the US during the dates under consideration. Finally, Wright also studies the fascinating relationships between publishers, artists, and market forces within the comic book industry. This book emphasizes the importance of comics as a healthy genre that has often explored areas of life in the United States that were taboo to mainstream media and culture. Wright's account of the evolution of comics during the Vietnam War is especially valuable. Johns Hopkins has done a beautiful job of designing this book: the elegantly typeset pages are complemented by many excellently chosen replicas of comic book covers and interior pages. These replicas are well chosen and enhance the reading of the book. One can't say enough about this young scholar's prose and insightful analysis. This is a book that all students and professors of 20th century American culture should read-several times!
17 internautes sur 22 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Too Much That is Not Discussed 27 mars 2006
Par A. Clark - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
There is simply too much that is not discussed for this to be a truly effective book, including most of DC and Marvel's non-superhero output, so that their war, western, and romance comics are neglected and the horror boom of the 1970s is largely ignored. The many superhero comics of the 60s that were published by companies other than DC and Marvel are also overlooked. Harvey and Gold Key are barely mentioned and to read this book, you would think that Charlton only printed war comics.
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