Comic Criticism

Making comics is not only fun, but a great way to improve your critical thinking and analytical skills. Combining text and image into graphic narratives can help us synthesise and better understand the key points of complex theories or concepts discussed in a lecture or prescribed reading. This creative learning task introduces you to some tools and techniques to help you get critical with comics.

Critical concepts: cultural appropriation, postcolonialism, power, globalisation, Other.
Creative task: make a comic.
Author: Dr Jodie Taylor, SAE Creative Media Institute

Using Bitstrips, which I have linked to below, here is an example of three comics I created based on terminology and concepts covered in our Cultural Perspectives course. These should give you an idea of ways that you can synthesise a theory, concept or key point into an illustrated comic of you own.

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Your Task

Following the examples above, your task is to create a critical comic of your own, based on concepts covered in our lesson on the West and the Rest. A list of concepts you might want to consider for you comic have been provided below as a guide, but you are free to choose a concept or aspect of the reading, or cultural text as the basis for your inspiration.
● Cultural appropriation
● Globalisation
● Cultural imperialism
● Othering
● Power
● Anglocentrism
● Post-colonialism
● Cultural homogeneity
● Cultural hybridity
Simply choose an idea that interests you, particularly one that you think is important to remember and try and summarise it in a comic frame or if you’re feeling adventurous, why not make a comic strip?
But before you get started, let’s take a look at a few other examples of cultural criticism presented in the form of a comic and discuss how effective they are at communicating an idea. Try to identify what makes them good or bad examples of critical communication.

This Short Comic Will Forever Change Your Perspective On Privilege

Scientists are giving this 71-year-old monk the title of the “world’s happiest man.” His name is Mathiew Ricard, and he says that the secret to being happy takes just 15 minutes a day. We all have the capacity to reach his level of happiness, but can we do it?

#DHPoco: Postcolonial Digital Humanities

Follow our comic strip on the postcolonial digital humanities and our other posts on the subject here! Also visit our main academic site, #dhpoco is run by Adeline Koh…

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And just in case you need a little more inspiration, here are a few more sources of comic critique.

How Philosophy is Made

How Philosophy is Made There are no known historical records of Socrates owning an armchair, which has caused some to theorize that all his philosophy was actually done by his wife in the bath. He would then listen in, in secret, and repeat what he had heard in the town square, as if it were his own ideas.

Online comic creation tools

Try one of these free browser-based comic creation tools.

Pixton Comic & Storyboard Builder for Education

Educators! Learn how to use Pixton in the classroom. Set up your classroom and begin teaching any subject in minutes through the super-power of comics.

Create Your Own Comic Strips Online with MakeBeliefsComix


Create Your Own Super Hero on Marvel HQ

Create your own Super Hero with our Marvel “Create Your Own” experiences! If you love Spider-Man be sure to Create Your Own Web Warrior. If you’re a fan of Iron Man be sure to Create Your Own Iron Man Suit. And if you’re a Guardians fan be sure to Create Your Own Guardian of the Galaxy.

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stripcreator : make your own comic strips

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And don’t forget that sharing is caring so pin your awesome creations to the class Pinterest board.

Media and Cultural Studies (saebrisbane) – Profile | Pinterest

Media and Cultural Studies | Media Studies (CIU210), Cultural Perspectives (CIU211) and Critical Inquiry (CIU402).