Cover

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pp. 1-3

Title Page

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pp. 4-4

Copyright Page

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pp. 5-5

Contents

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pp. v-vi

List of Illustrations

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pp. vii-viii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-x

This book emerges from my thesis work, which was published with Tampere University Press. Since then, my thinking on contemporary comics has come a long way. I would like to thank everyone who accompanied it with their kind and thoughtful comments: Terence Cave, David Fishelov, Ann Miller, ...

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Introduction

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pp. 1-12

Many reasons for the rise of comics to a medium of cultural prominence have been put forward in recent years. Paul Douglas Lopes in Demanding Respect: The Evolution of the American Comic Book (2009) emphasizes one: “While comic books originally were based on short stories in serial format, now comic books present long-arced narratives with complex storylines. ...

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1. How to Analyze Comics Cognitively

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pp. 13-50

The first Sunday installment of Milton Caniff’s Steve Canyon series (1947– 88) presents readers with a formidable density of narrative information: from patterns of black and white on the page, readers can construct an entire story. They identify characters, understand what motivates them and how they relate to each other, ...

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2. Textual Traditions in Comics: Fables, Genre, and Intertextuality

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pp. 51-86

A man leaves a note for the woman he has just spent the night with. He asks her to pick up his suits from the dry cleaners and to do his laundry. He mentions that he has helped himself to her spare apartment keys and some money from her purse. “I didn’t want to wake you to ask,” he writes, “and knew you wouldn’t mind” ( Fables 1:30). ...

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3. Fictionality in Comics: Tom Strong, Storyworlds, and the Imagination

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pp. 87-126

On one of his missions in Tom Strong's Terrific Tales (2004), the superhero Tom Strong enters an arctic cave and chances upon a secret Nazi science project which involves the theory that the earth is hollow as well as flying saucers. As it turns out, however, the fantastic subterranean world is not real. ...

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4. Fictional Minds in Comics: 100 Bullets, Characterization, and Ethics

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pp. 127-176

The comics series 100 Bullets opens on a rainy street with the words “Bang. You’re dead” (1:5). The premise is simple: an agent offers an attaché case of one hundred untraceable bullets and an unregistered gun to people who have been wronged in life. Equipped with the evidence the agent supplies, they have carte blanche to take their revenge. ...

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Conclusion

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pp. 177-188

In Contemporary Comics Storytelling, each of the constituents of the title is salient. In the introduction I focused more on the “contemporary” aspect of this book, mapping its place in a time of rising cultural prestige for comics and an era that begins to renegotiate postmodernism. Comics like Fables, Tom Strong, and 100 Bullets are literature, ...

Notes

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pp. 189-206

Bibliography

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pp. 207-226

Index

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pp. 227-231