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Comic Strips

  • By: Kristy Beers Fägersten
  • In: Encyclopedia of Humor Studies
  • Edited by: Salvatore Attardo
  • Subject:General Media, Communication & Cultural Studies, Sociology of Culture

The modern incarnation of comic strips can trace its origins to illustrated novels of the early-19th century, when graphic art in the form of cartoons and caricatures was widely appreciated as post hoc narrative support. At that time, however, original illustrated stories were also finding an audience. In Europe, creations such as Rudolphe Töpffer's Histoire de M. Vieux Bois (1827) and Wilhelm Busch's Max und Moritz (1865) would prove to have a definitive influence on the production of American comic art, which in turn would affect the global development of the comic strip as a forum for gag humor, social commentary, political satire, or science-fiction adventure. This entry gives a brief history of the popularization of comic strips and presents the key features of comic ...

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