I’ve been reading graphic novels ever since my twin brother invested in the first volume of the Ultimate Spider-man series; soon after, manga became a fad, and I had to learn to read my comics backwards! The modern, artistic graphic novels are new to me, however, and I come to this project with sufficient background to explore this new and growing genre. I’ve read comic books from several decade and developers, as well as comics dealing with every situation from a Krpytonian immigrant to a sentient suit of armor that can do “alchemy.” Modern graphic novels are a natural extension of my earlier experiences, and I can’t wait to see how the art has changed! I think a solid thesis for the project should cut out the survey aspect entirely, and focus on a specific period and genre of graphic novel. Then, our argument could look something like: “Graphic novels from X time period used Y elements in their literature to achieve Z culturally specific goals.” The history is just too big otherwise.
As a side note, I’m also the only male on the team. Considering the stereotypes surrounding graphic novels (and comic books more specifically) comparing my reaction to graphic novels with the gals should be a good way to confirm or bust those myths!
– Michael Pagliaro