22 February 2012

Time to Rip McCloud a New One!

I kid. We're not going to tear him apart. My buddy Dylan Horrocks has already done that for us!

Dylan Horrocks' article Inventing Comics: Scott McCloud's Definition of Comics is kind of like our Rhetorical Analysis essay on steroids. It was first published in The Comics Journal, an academic periodical about comics, in 2001--almost a decade after Understanding Comics. It's an important piece because while our class (and McCloud's readership as a whole) takes his ideas at face value, Horrocks shows us why we shouldn't. And it's in that that we can truly see the brilliance of McCloud's rhetoric.

This is your reading for next week. But be warned, it's pretty long, somewhat dense, and I want you to blog about it! This is not a night-berfore-at-10pm assignment! You need to spend some time with this text before your write about it, and then give yourself some time to draft a strong, coherent post. As this essay will likely give you a strong background for the rest of the semester's work, you'll want to make sure you have a good grasp on it before we discuss it in class and clear up the difficult bits.

Your blog will begin with your typical summary (which will be very helpful when it's time to start our second essay). Then end with your response by choosing 1 or 2 of Horrocks' key ideas, explaining how they respond to McCloud, and weighing-in with your own opinion on the subject.

Lastly, because of how important it will be to look at this piece as a class, you need to come to class with notes on the article! You can even just print up your blog post on it if you want. But you need to come to class prepared to discuss his ideas, and you can't do that from memory! Coming to class unprepared to discuss this reading will result in dire consequences!

Questions? Quibbles? Controversies?

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