Brigid Alverson reports from the scene of the 2018 Graphic Medicine Conference in Vermont, which is focused on graphic novels that describe the experience of illness and of being a patient.
I’m up in White River Junction, Vermont, home of the Center for Cartoon Studies and, for this weekend only, the Graphic Medicine Conference. Actually, the conference has two venues—it starts at CCS and moves to the Dartmouth medical school on Saturday.
The term “graphic medicine” may conjure up an image of a comic about healthy eating or the wonderful world of the circulatory system, but graphic medicine in this case has a more literary bent. It’s part of the field called medical humanities and focuses not on educational comics but on graphic novels that describe the experience of illness and of being a patient, embracing titles as disparate as Jennifer Hayden’s The Story Of My Tits, Ellen Forney’s Marbles and Roz Chast’s Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? (I wrote a short primer on the topic for School Library Journal recently.)
Winners of the annual award by Slate and the Center for Cartoon Studies will be announced March 30.
The Slate Book Review and the Center for Cartoon Studies have announced the nominees for its annual Cartoonist Studio Prize, which awards $1,000 to the creator of one print comic and one webcomic.
Slate began the program in 2012 in conjunction with the Center for Cartoon Studies. Previous winners include Noelle Stevenson for Nimona, Chris Ware for Building Stories, Taiyo Matsumoto for Sunny, Winston Rowntree for Watching, Carol Tyler for Soldier’s Heart: The Campaign to Understand My WWII Veteran Father, and last year’s winners, Eleanor Davis for Libby’s Dad and Christina Tran for “On Beauty.”
The creator of ‘War of Streets and Houses’ talks about her journalism comics collection, ‘What is a Glacier?,’ and her work translating ‘Pretending is Lying.’
Since her book War of Streets and Houses was published by Uncivilized Books, it seems as though Sophie Yanow has been publishing work on a regular basis. She’s become a significant comics journalist, regularly publishing pieces in The Nib and The Guardian and elsewhere, covering the protests at Standing Rock and the U.S. elections. This year she has two very different comics coming out. The New York Review of Comics has just released Pretending is Lying, a comics memoir by Dominique Goblet that Yanow translated. At TCAF, Retrofit Comics released What is a Glacier, which collects some of Yanow’s journalism comics.
Yanow is currently teaching at the Center for Cartoon Studies in Vermont and this career model – making nonfiction comics, teaching, translation – has existed among prose writers and poets for generations, but it’s something new to comics. We spoke recently about Goblet, translation, nonfiction and the idea that Pretending is Lying.