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When We Last Left Our Heroes

Image for Comics and Graphic Novels network

 

Dominic Davies, member of the TORCH Comics and Graphic Novels network, spoke to Umapagan Ampikaipakan, host of the podcast 'When We Last Left Our Heroes', which appears monthly on Malaysia's popular BFM 89.9 and episodes of which can still be downloaded here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/bfm-when-we-last-left-our/id10233265... (Dominic's podcast is Episode #22). The podcast is an ongoing series dedicated to the superhero, taking an in-depth look at how this uniquely American invention has grown, over the last century, to become a global cultural phenomenon and how this modern mythology has come to bear such an incredible influence over our collective cultures. Uma spoke to Dominic in an extended discussion about the significance that the establishment of an academic comics community at an institution such as Oxford might tell us about the nature of the superhero comic more generally. They discuss they extent to which comics should or can be seen as a type of literature, the difference between assembly line style publishers, the authorship of graphic novels, and how there is still a lingering sense of comics being a 'low art form', even within and between different kinds of comics and graphic novels. The conversation then turns to the use of comics as an educational tool and as a way to encourage reading habits in younger people, and Dominic and Uma speculate on the future of comics in both academic institutions as well as secondary and primary schools.