The Graphics of War: Comics, Animation, and Simulation

Emily Roxworthy


Syllabus: CAT1_FA11_Roxworthy_Syllabus.pdf

Are the current college students the least empathetic generation in American history? Recent studies have found that they are and blame social media, avatars, video games, and other spectacular implements of digital life for this decline in human empathy. This course explores the recent history of graphic interactivity with "reality"—starting with comics and graphic novels and moving on to animation in film and video games—to ask if Animation, Simulation, and Performance engage us more deeply in the world around us. As the United States continues to battle the War on Terror, the course's graphic texts will be focused on war stories as one of the most emotionally loaded sites of human experience, in order to examine whether visual representations (in this case, of war) create empathic communities or further atomize and alienate us from one another.

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