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"The Aesthetics of Trash" : Reassessing Animation and the Comic

An International Conference

28th - 29th August 2007

Manchester Metropolitan University

Abstracts and Delegate Information now available pdf icon


This interdisciplinary conference will address issues surrounding the achievements, cultural status and thematic concerns of animation and comics. Until comparatively recently the fields of animation and comics have received little serious critical attention in the English speaking world. Both have been regarded as second class media which were 'below critical radar'. Since the 1980s writings and research on animation (Crafton, Cannemaker, Bendazzi, Wells) and the comic (Barker, Sabin, Gravett) have begun to recuperate the reputation of these media, both through a thorough examination of their history, and a critical assessment of their aesthetic and cultural value.

There is still a vast amount of work to be done in these areas (and also on the relationship between both media and the live action film). This two day conference will bring together current research in these areas and indicate directions that future research might take.

Papers are invited on a wide range of topics, including:

  • Comics/animation & Genre
  • The Language of Comics
  • How have new media affected the comic?
  • What has been the influence of Japan on Western comics and/or animation?
  • What is the future of animation?
  • Comics fans
  • Comics/animation and gender issues
  • American Animation Studios
  • The Animator as Auteur
  • Animation & the Net
  • Has the superhero comic been superseded by the superhero film?
  • Comics & New Media
  • Comics/animation and censorship
  • Film Adaptations
  • Animation ; art vs industry
  • How does the construction of the cartoon star relate to live action stardom?
  • Experimental Animation
  • The Comic Strip
  • Underground and Alternative comics
  • Comics/animation and nationalism/nationality

Papers will be considered on related themes.

300 word abstracts should be submitted by June 25th 2007 to the organising joint chairs:

Dr David Huxley

Dr Joan Ormrod

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