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Attitude: The New Subversive Political Cartoonists Paperback – June 1, 2002
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Today's most provocative editorial cartooning isn't in daily newspapers; it is in alternative weeklies. Whereas old-school editorial cartoonists rely on timeworn traditions, topics, and techniques, the new breed tackles contemporary concerns, such as commercialism and environmentalism (invariably from the left), rather than electoral politics, and generally works in comic-strip, instead of single-panel, format. Rall, one of the most prominent newcomers, interviews 20 colleagues and presents generous samplings of their work. Some, such as Tom Tomorrow and Peter Kuper, are relatively familiar because of occasional appearances in mainstream publications like Time and Newsweek; others probably are known only by their local followings. Many don't draw that well; indeed, some can barely draw at all. Their drawings are usually subservient to their scripts, and both take a back seat to their attitude (as in chip-on-the-shoulder), which seems to be the essential ingredient for success in their milieu. The best of them possess so much lacerating wit and unswerving commitment that they fairly shame their hidebound mainstream counterparts into retirement. Gordon Flagg
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From the Author
These artists work in the netherworld between facile categorizations. Because they're passionate and strident, they're too alternative for mainstream daily papers. But they're not always considered alternative by the artsy crowd because they're articulate and actually care about ordinary people's concerns. Perhaps because they defy easy labeling, they're creating the most interesting work in cartooning today. It's an honor to help present this new genre to the public.
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I'm still glad he undertook the project because it is important to get a survey of the efforts being made in cartooning and comic art in this part of the media stream, but to call them "subversive" is really silly. If you're a journalism prof or a historian I hope you pick up a copy. If you're looking for examples of effective, hard-hitting, bloodthirsty graphic activism, this is not the place to find it. You CAN find examples HERE: Buy This Book and HERE: Buy This Too and HERE: Sutton Impact
As a reader of the NY Times and Village Voice, I was familiar with the work of Ted Rall, Tom Tomorrow, and Ward Sutton. After finishing Attitude, I ordered a copy of Andy Singer's Cartoons, which is even smaller in size but excellent.