Sunday, January 23, 2005

Profile: James Sturm

The Boston Globe briefly profiles cartoonist James Sturm, founder of the Center for Cartoon Studies:
"I just think because they [comics] are so immediately accessible, they are easier to dismiss. Somehow we associate them with juveniles, that they're for kids. I don't know. . . . People were a little bit afraid of comics for a while. In the '50s they would throw them on the bonfires and burn them because they thought they were rotting the brains of America's youth. There were Senate subcommittee hearings, and comics were seen as an impediment to education, whereas today comics are [seen as] a great way to get kids excited about reading. In the '50s, they just thought that there were all these horror comics, and that there were homosexual underpinnings to Batman and Robin, and there was this backlash against them. The comics industry started self-policing, self-censoring, and it really put the medium back quite a bit in terms of its development. "