In a new peer-reviewed article for the academic journal Labour/Le Travail, “Drawn to Change: Comics and Critical Consciousness,” GHC member Sean Carleton examines how political comics today might be used to cultivate critical consciousness.
You can read/download “Drawn to Change” here: https://www.academia.edu/7544520/Drawn_to_Change_Comics_and_Critical_Consciousness
In this article, Sean contextualizes the recent mainstream resurgence of comic books and outlines academia’s response to the increasingly popular medium. He blends Paulo Freire’s theory of critical consciousness with relevant comics theory to suggest certain theoretical and analytical tools that might help teachers, students, artists, and activists to better evaluate the political potential of comic books for themselves. As examples of the potential of comics for critical consciousness, Sean then analyzes two Canadian works (The 500 Years of Resistance Comic Book by Gord Hill and Shift in Progress: A Not-So-Comic-Book by Sioban Louden et al.) that document peoples’ struggles against colonialism and capitalism, respectively. In the end, Sean argues that engaging with comics can be a significant challenge as well as a valuable opportunity to cultivate critical consciousness in the 21st century.
Rooted in Sean’s experience as a member of the GHC, “Drawn to Change” also features artwork from The 500 Years of Resistance Comic Book, Shift in Progress, and the GHC’s first comic book May Day: A Graphic History of Progress.