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ERIC Number: EJ971710
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Feb
Pages: 31
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2745
Cartooning History: Canada's Stories in Graphic Novels
King, Alyson E.
History Teacher, v45 n2 p189-219 Feb 2012
In recent years, historical events, issues, and characters have been portrayed in an increasing number of non-fiction graphic texts. Similar to comics and graphic novels, graphic texts are defined as fully developed, non-fiction narratives told through panels of sequential art. Such non-fiction graphic texts are being used to teach history in Canada and the U.S., following a trend in using images to allow students to see history in pictures. While there is evidence that multiliteracies skills are developed through the use of social networking sites such as Facebook, as well as graphic narratives, it is not clear how the multimodal nature of graphic narratives are affecting the ways in which we understand Canada's past. In this paper, the author focuses on two quite different graphic texts, Chester Brown's "Louis Riel: A Comic-Strip Biography" and David Collier's "Portraits from Life," to reflect on the potential of graphic histories in developing a historical consciousness, as well as on how such non-fiction graphic texts may impact historical thinking. These two books represent new ways seeing and understanding historical events, while opening the door for discussions of how historical events and figures are portrayed in different ways by different writers. Because of their non-academic, more informal appearance, graphic histories may allow for more critical analysis and historical thinking by history students. (Contains 14 figures and 71 notes.)
Society for History Education. California State University, Long Beach, 1250 Bellflower Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90840-1601. Tel: 562-985-2573; Fax: 562-985-5431; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada