Sunday, August 28, 2005

A Little Weekend Linkblogging

  • On Interpretation: Comic Books, Superheroes, and the Horizon of Meaning is Jim Roeg's latest at Double Articulation. It's a perfect read for a quiet Sunday morning with a mug o' java. Jim manages a short introduction to modern schools of literary criticism while laying out his own position on the author/reader debate. Like good critical writing should, it fires off a thousand thoughts in me, which I would hope to explore a later date. For example: How much has adolescent "reader reaction" to superheroes as Adolescent Power Fantasy colored the industry itself, considering that is not necessarily authorial intent? Are there other interpretations of the genre that can be stripped free of it's initial audience? It's utterly fascinating and dense, just the kind of academic criticism I really enjoy reading. My writing takes a different approach .... but if I could write (and think) like one other comic blogger out there, it'd be Jim.

  • Near Mint Heroes has a new meme, and it's one that I'll probably enjoy thinking about for some time before writing it. The possibilities are endless...

  • I can't remember now where I stumbled across Greta's Book Reviews, but I sure like it. She's completely omnivorous in her reading, switching from Batman to Dolltopia at the drop of a hat. I think we need more of that attitude, and I applaud her for it.

5 comments:

Jim Roeg said...

Thanks, Mark. I'm blushing--you really made my day; and the feeling's mutual, by the way. The brutal thing about grad school is that you end up speaking a language that sounds like gibberish to everyone you'd most like to talk to, so I'm just thrilled at the prospect of spurring some further discussion and debate about comics. I eagerly look forward to your thoughts on the questions you raise above!

Mark Fossen said...

Though I didn't do grad school ... I do speak the language. :)

I spent a lot of time haning with Theatre PhD candidates around the country (mainly at Cal berkeley), and could go toe-to-toe. But as a working actor/director, I always felt the need to temper academic criticism with a more practical criticism.

The things you're able to to ... it's like Tiger Woods juggling a golf ball on the head of his club. It's a dazzling display of dexterity.

Shane Bailey said...

To be honest I don't really "speak" the language that you guys write in, but I can understand it. I just can't write in it. I tend to try to boil things down to simple terms (sometimes so I can try to figure out what the hell I'm trying to say myself) or to write in a "speaking" voice. I've been told it doesn't really convey my personality much, but I'm trying to improve where I can. Thanks to both of you for doing what you do so well. You guys are my two favorite blogs around here. (I just made this post seem like one big appreciation fest didn't I?)

Jon Silpayamanant said...

After reading Jim's post I finally decided to blog something relatively significant myself. My writing muscles are so out of shape--I don't know how many drafts I must have started (on various topics) when I started up my blog.

After having spent the past few months reading alot of classical, traditional and modern Chinese and Indian literary and film theory (much of which deals with authorial intention) it's nice to read an ersatz defense of intention coming from someone "out of the West." Thanks for pointing Jim's blog out, Mark, I don't know how long it might have taken me to find it!

Jim Roeg said...

I always felt the need to temper academic criticism with a more practical criticism.

Just to keep the big appreciation-fest going :) ... Mark: this is what I love about your blog. You get the mix exactly right; your reviews and essays are without a doubt magazine worthy writing--carefully wrought, insightful, complex, and compulsively readable. As much as I've gotten out of my studies, literary theory-speak is a double-edged sword because its language can mystify as readily as it can illuminate, and all too often it does the former (particularly in institutional contexts). I have an ambivalent relationship with this vocabulary, but it's part of how I think now, for better or worse!

By the way, the Tiger Woods comment? And you too Shane and Jon? Careful, guys! My head will get so swollen that I'll be trapped in my study! (Don't stop.) ;)