SATRAPI JUST CHANGED MY MIND ABOUT COMICS!
I just wanted to highlight my newfound respect for comics as a result of Satrapi's Persepolis. I was fully engrossed in the narrative and I found Satrapi's story extremely compelling. I read the entire thing from cover to cover in one sitting. But I can't help wonder why this was so different from my experience with Scott McCloud's Understanding Comics.
I believe that this was because McCloud, though extremely casual and "chatty", writes non-fiction. Satrapi, on the other hand, is telling a story. This made me realize that the genre of the "comic" or "graphic narrative" is a lot more complex that we imagine. What interests me, however, is why the "comic" genre is separate from other genres.
Think about what we define as "genre" in literature. There's "drama", "thriller", "romance" etc. They're characterized by their content, not by the way they are layed out on the page. So why are we creating this label of "comic" when really, the comics themselves have content that lends itself to (sometimes multiple) genres? And in reverse, why do we characterize in terms of content if the content can also lend itself to genres by the ways that pages are laid out? So what does genre actually mean and how are we defining it?
My bottom line is, in a class where we're dicussing genre, I don't think that we've looked enough at our definitions of what genre is enough. And thinking back to my ideas about genre (and how I don't like them), I personally believe that my opinion does not have a strong enough basis for my "opinion". I'd like to work on my definition a little before coming up with any conclusions.