Search | Directories | Reference Tools
UW Home > Discover UW > Student Guide > Course Catalog 

Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Jose Alaniz
C LIT 396
Seattle Campus

Special Studies in Comparative Literature

Offered by visitors or resident faculty. Content varies.

Class description

The Comics Get Real: Non-Fiction in Graphic Narrative

Traditionally, readers have not seen fit to associate comics with such “serious” genres as autobiography, memoir and war reportage. But in resisting its ghettoization as a mere “children’s medium” and in a bid for cultural/literary legitimacy, comic art over the last 40 years has produced numerous works devoted to weighty real-world subject matter, documenting religious conflict, family dysfunction, migration and the banal realities of daily life. Apart from interrogating and theorizing such matters as autobiography, literary realism and journalism in a verbal/visual medium, this course examines graphic narrative’s depiction of non-fiction topics in works by Alison Bechdel, Marjane Satrapi, Harvey Pekar, Art Spiegelman, Justin Green, David B., Phoebe Gloeckner, Joe Sacco, Robert Crumb and others. Come see what happens when the comics get “real”!

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

One mid-term paper, one final paper, weekly half-page reading response.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Jose Alaniz
Date: 01/27/2014