ImageTexT: Interdisciplinary Comics Studies

ISSN: 1549-6732

ImageTexT is a peer-reviewed, open access journal dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of comics and related media. We are published by the English Department at the University of Florida with support from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Our content is available free of charge, and regular issues of ImageTexT will be published three times per year.

Volume 8, Issue 2



Past Issues

Volume 8 (2015)

  • Issue 2
     Special Issue: Grant Morrison
  • Issue 1
     General Issue with "Monsters in the Margins" Forum

Volume 7 (2013-2014)

Volume 6 (2011 - 2013)

Volume 5 (2010 - 2011)

Volume 4 (2008 - 2009)

Volume 3 (2006 - 2007)

Volume 2 (2005 - 2006)

Volume 1 (2004 - 2005)

Editorial Board

  • Terry Harpold Editor

  • Anastasia Ulanowicz Associate Editor

  • Donald Ault Founder and Editor Emeritus

Editorial Advisory Board

  • Fredric Jameson
  • W.J.T. Mitchell
  • Jerome J. McGann

Editorial Review Board

  • Martin Barker
  • Scott Bukatman
  • Richard Burt
  • Sean Carney
  • Will Eisner (in memoriam)
  • Ian Gordon
  • Terry Harpold
  • Charles Hatfield
  • M. Thomas Inge
  • John Lent
  • Jeffery Klaehn
  • David Kunzle
  • Joseph Murphy
  • Scott Nygren (in memoriam)
  • Derek Parker Royal
  • Maureen Turim
  • Roger Sabin
  • Joseph Witek
  • Julian Wolfreys
  • Phil Wegner

The Sequential Artists Workshop

A new comix art school, The Sequential Artists Workshop, is soon open in Gainesville, FL. Please see the website at for details. From the SAW website:

A couple years ago we had the crazy idea to open a school; an informal, but serious school, with a curriculum to match any anywhere, but without the baggage, the loans or the politics of higher education. This was the challenge: to create an outpost of support and learning in the comics world. We’re here to educate students and support artists. SAW is a place you can come for a week or a year and forge your personal creative path in visual storytelling.

SAW's mission statement is described in this excerpt from a letter which was sent by the school's founders, who include Tom Hart and Leela Corman, before the school's opening:

We're starting this school because we recognize more and more the need for intensive training in this artform, and also want to see the good, interesting adventurous artists out there multiply and flourish. That's why we're calling it The Sequential Artists Workshop: our mission is to train and support artists.
The school is being founded by Tom Hart, who has taught cartooning at the School of Visual Arts in New York City for 10 years, and has helped countless amazing students at SVA become artists. Tom says, "Cartooning and graphic novels are becoming bigger and bigger every day. I tutor and teach more and more people who are fascinated by this medium but don't know it's workings or don't know its history, or who just need time and mentoring to practice, learn and work. We want to be a place to for those people to work, to learn the form and to become sequential artists."

You can see the letter in full on our announcement of the Workshop on the ImageTexT News Feed. We at ImageTexT hope that you will extend support to this exciting new organization.


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[cfp] Comics and Fine Art

Posted 11 Sep, 2015
Guest Editors: Colin Beineke and Ben Novotny Owen

ImageText is accepting paper submissions for a special forum on the topic of “Comics and Fine Art.” As comics scholar Bart Beaty has noted, “One of the significant consequences of the literary turn in the study of comics has been a tendency to drive attention away from comics as a form of visual culture. Comics have rarely been considered an art form akin to painting, sculpture, or photography, and they are not commonly taught in courses in art history.” The segregation of comics and art historical/critical scholarship has left comics studies impoverished of potentially useful critical vocabulary and methodology. Additionally, it has lead scholars of fine art and comics alike to neglect the rich history of exchange between the two forms, which can be dated back to at least the French avant-garde of the late nineteenth century.

Looking to fill this gap, this special forum will take seriously the status of comics as a visual art which shares much in the way of style, technique, and form with works of the fine art world. We seek to gather a collection of essays which demonstrate the potential for dialogue between these disciplines and their respective objects of study. In general, we are interested in papers which address some aspect of the rapport between comics and fine art. Submissions in the range of 6,000-10,000 words are welcome.

In particular, we are interested in collecting essays which address:

  • the work of comics artists who operate in (traditionally) fine art modes, such as Ho Che Anderson, Bill Sienkiewicz, Hanneriina Moisseinen, Dave McKean, Ashley Wood, and David Mack
  • work by fine artists which actively engages comics form and content, such as Philippe Parreno, Rivane Neuenschwander, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, and Jasper Johns
  • artists who work both in comics and fine art, such as Marcel Duchamp, Ad Reinhardt, Phoebe Glockner, Julie Doucet, and John Jennings
  • work by comics artists or fine artists which defy, ignore, or attempt to bridge distinctions between comics and fine art, such as Aidan Koch, Saul Steinberg, William Steig, and Mark Newgarden
  • comics which take as their subject art forms, artists, or art works from the fine art world, or inversely works of fine art which take as their subject artists or works from the comics art world
  • comics through the theories and methodologies of art history and criticism, either entirely new or responding to existing work, such as Scott Bukatman’s work on Mike Mignola and sculpture
  • fine art through the theories and methodologies of comics studies, either entirely new or responding to existing work, such as Rebecca Zurier on the Ashcan School or Peter Sattler on the Armory Show
  • artistic training and the position(ing) of cartooning within art schools
  • comics as fine art/artists’ books, avant-garde anthologies such as Kramers Ergot, and publishers whose work includes fine art books and comics, such as Koyama Press and PictureBox

Completed submissions for this special forum are due on April 1st, 2016. Please send all submissions or questions to Colin Beineke at and Ben Novonty Owen at Please also read the ImageText submissions guidelines: All images should be provided as ZIP files.

Submissions will be peer-reviewed and returned by June 15th, 2016. This special forum is scheduled to appear in the winter of 2017.

[cfp] Traumics: Comics Narratives of Trauma: A Special Forum of ImageTexT

Posted 11 Sep, 2015
Editors: Najwa Al-Tabaa, Spencer Chalifour, and Kayley Thomas

ImageTexT at the University of Florida invites applicants to submit full-length articles (6,000-10,000 words) on Traumics: Comics Narratives of Trauma by Nov. 1, 2015.

Traumics are, simply put, comics plus trauma. With their syntax of panels, gutters, and pages and their use of the evocative power of image in conjunction with the precise communication of text, comics are uniquely suited to delivering narratives of trauma. The relationship of trauma (especially childhood trauma) to the comics medium is a thread that runs throughout Hillary L. Chute's 2010 Graphic Women: Life Narrative & Contemporary Comics, a book which is structured around exploring the works of five autobiographical comics artists (Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Phoebe Gloeckner, Lynda Barry, Marjane Satrapi, and Alison Bechdel). By their very nature, comics provide a potentially ideal means through which to tell those stories that require the fragmentation and reconstruction of events of high drama and emotional intensity. The juxtaposition of images on the comic page make comics what might be considered a ‘natural' fit for exploring the concept of "Remembering, repeating, and working-through" examined so in-depth in Cathy Caruth's seminal 1996 work on trauma, Unclaimed Experience: Trauma, Narrative and History.

More than two decades ago, Art Spiegelman's Pulitzer-winning opus, Maus, changed the way much of the reading public views comics, and is now one of the most iconic and recognizable Holocaust narratives to be studied in the classroom or found on bookstore shelves. Since the turn of the century, autobiographical comics like Alison Bechdel's Fun Home, Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis, and Phoebe Gloeckner's Diary of a Teenage Girl have all been released to great critical acclaim. Epileptic, David B.'s autobiographical exploration of medical trauma, hugged the transition from the 1900s to the 2000s, with its original French release running from 1996 to 2003; more recently, David Small's autobiographical Stitches (2009) also forced a spotlight on medical trauma, using bold, rough graphics to recount the horror of a child's battle with cancer. Robert Kirkman's zombie survival horror comic The Walking Dead (which began its run in 2003 and continues today) has captured the American cultural imagination, with its adaptations ranging from a television show and video game to a prominent role in the most recent Halloween Horror Nights attraction at Universal Studios. Comics and war narratives (as well as war reporting) have also gone hand-in-hand for many years; just this November, noted war comics writer and artist Joe Sacco released his latest work, The Great War, which tells the story of the first day of the Battle of the Somme in one continuous, 24-foot drawing. Comics have become one of the most important and visible venues through which a 21st-century audience understands, imagines, and works through traumatic events.

We invite papers from all disciplines on the theme of "traumics: comics narratives of trauma." Possible topics include but are not limited to:

  • Comics and Journalism (Example: Guibert, Lefevre and Lemercier's The Photographer)
  • Comics and Autobiography / Graphic Memoir Examplse: Alison Bechdel's Fun Home, David B.'s Epileptic, Phoebe Gloeckner's The Diary of a Teenage Girl and A Child's Life, David Small's Stitches)
  • Comics as Blogging / In blogging (Example: Allie Brosh's Hyperbole and a Half)
  • Violence in the Comics and Cultural Responses (Examples: "mainstream" violence in Marvel and DC comics, violence and the Comics Code Authority)
  • Comics Go to War / Comics About War / Comics Read and/or Written on the Front Lines (Examples: The 'Nam, Commando Comics)
  • Generational Trauma (Examples: Carol Tyler’s You Never Know, Art Spiegelman’s Maus)
  • The Traumatic Oeuvre of Joe Sacco
  • Art Spiegelman's Maus and its Critical Reception
  • How Comics Represent Trauma / Traumatic Experiences in the Comics
  • Trauma and Sexuality in the Comics (Example: in the work of Alan Moore)
  • Rape and Sexual Assault in the Comics / The Discussion Thereof (See: The controversy surrounding Mark Millar's rape comments)
  • Trauma and Manga (Examples: in the work of Osamu Tezuka and Hagio Moto)
  • Childhood and Trauma in Comics (Examples: Lynda Barry’s 1000 Demons, Craig Thompson’s Blankets and Habibi)
  • Childhood and Trauma in Illustrated Books and Children's Picture Books (Examples: Neil Gaiman's Coraline, Maurice Sendak's Outside Over There)
  • The Imagetext of the Newspaper / How Trauma is Reported through Media

"Traumics: Comics Narratives of Trauma" will consider papers from graduate students, professors, independent scholars, undergraduates and other academics, and all submissions will be judged based on merit.

Submissions should be between 6,000-10,000 words, and are due Nov. 1, 2015. All proposals should be submitted to with the subject line, RE: Traumics Forum

Please see the ImageTexT Submission Guidelines for more information on formatting, image inclusion, and the review process:

[general] Alex Robinson Voyages Into OUR EXPANDING UNIVERSE!

Posted 09 Sep, 2015

Ever since the days of his massive award-winning debut Box Office Poison, Alex Robinson has been one of the indie comics community's biggest stars — "A master cartoonist," as Publishers Weekly put it. Now, like Halley's comet, he's completed another lengthy trip around the solar system and come back with a powerful new graphic novel: Our Expanding Universe!


The award-winning author of Box Office Poison, Tricked, and Too Cool to Be Forgotten returns to his home turf, as a small constellation of city-dwellers take a frightening step into the unknown: parenthood.

Amid dinner parties, game nights, and hospital stays, a once-tight group of friends wrestle with the shifting shapes of their lives. Under the pressures of marriage and the passage of time, will they cling to the past, leap into the future, or self-destruct? Hey, not every implosion leads to a Big Bang...

  • A 256-page, b&w softcover graphic novel with flaps, 6 1/2” x 9 5/8”.
  • ISBN 978-1-60309-377-4 • Diamond Comic Distributors code: SEP15-0465
  • $19.99 (US) • coming in November
  • Click here to read an 8-page preview!

Plus: a new look for a beloved classic!

But why stop there? We're proud to unveil a snazzy new edition of Alex Robinson's groundbreaking and widely beloved debut, Box Office Poison!

This 608-page opus — following an unforgettable ensemble cast through dreary jobs, messy apartments, new love, naked roommates, and comic-industry exploitation — has received such honors as the Eisner Award and the Angoulême Prix du Premier Album, and was declared by Wizard Magazine the best indy graphic novel of all time.

BOX OFFICE POISON (New Cover Edition) by Alex Robinson
  • A 608-page, b&w softcover graphic novel, 6 1/2” x 9 5/8”.
  • ISBN 978-1-891830-19-8 • Diamond Comic Distributors code: STAR13562
  • $29.95 (US) • coming in November
  • Click here to read a 5-page preview!
Chris Staros Top Shelf Productions PO Box 1282 Marietta GA 30061-1282 USA

[cfp] Call for book chapter proposals: Todo Fontanarrosa: la obra de un completo humorista / All Fontanarrosa: The Work of a Complete Humourist

Posted 04 Sep, 2015
Editors: Dr Celina Bortolotto (Massey University, New Zealand) and Dr Annick Pellegrin (University of Mauritius) Contact email:

When the Argentine Roberto Fontanarrosa passed away in 2007, a national day of mourning was declared and his funeral was attended by thousands. Although Fontanarrosa was much loved and both the man and his works have received public recognition time and again, there are very few published academic works on his œuvre to this day. This proposed anthology seeks to fill this gap by paying attention to Fontanarrosa’s work as a whole.

We therefore invite papers in English, Spanish or Portuguese that consider any aspect of Fontanarrosa’s œuvre, including but not limited to:

  • short stories and novels
  • comics
  • cinema and theatre
  • interviews and public addresses (such as his famous speech on “Las malas palabras”)

Abstracts of 1000 words and a short CV should be sent to by 31 December 2015 for consideration. Please write your family name(s) and “Fontanarrosa project” in the subject line. If accepted, full papers will be due on 31 May 2016.

[issue] ImageTexT 8.2: The Worlds of Grant Morrison

Posted 04 Sep, 2015

ImageTexT: Interdisciplinary Comics Studies is pleased to announce the release of its latest issue, volume 8 number 2, "The Worlds of Grant Morrison." The issue was guest-edited by Frank Bramlett, Adnan Mahmutovic, and Francesco-Alessio Ursini. It can be accessed via our main page at or via its permalink location at

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ImageTexT is published by the Department of English at the University of Florida.