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The graphic novel

Le roman graphiqué

Comic book influences on the novel

Des influences de la BD sur le roman

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Published on Tuesday, September 02, 2014


Il existe des études sur la poésie influencée par la peinture ou sur le roman influencé par le cinéma, sur les réalisateurs et films influencés par les comics (Resnais, les 300 de Miller / Snyder) et sur la peinture utilisant les comics (Andy Warhol). Cependant, il n’y a rien ou presque sur le roman influencé par la BD ou les comics. Y a-t-il des romans informés par la BD ? Par ses thèmes, ses techniques narratives, ses spécificités visuelles ? Dans le monde anglo-saxon on en trouve déjà beaucoup et quelques études : De Funny Papers (1985) de Tom de Haven à Kavalier & Clay (prix Pulitzer 2001) de Michael Chabon. Qu’en est-il dans les autres cultures où la BD domine (France, Belgique Québec) ou le « manga » (Japon, Corée, Chine) ? Et comment interpréter cette adaptation inverse ? Est-ce une preuve supplémentaire de légitimation de la BD ? 



While there has been scholarly research on the influence of poetry on cinema, or the influence of paintings on poetry, as well as the relationship between film and fiction, little work has been published on the importance of comics and graphic novels for contemporary writing. Such a space is all the more obvious when one considers new works on the relationship between high and low culture, comics and fine art. What would for example a novelization of a BD, graphic novel or comic mean? What titles exist in today’s ‘comics aware’ culture and is there a forgotten tradition to discover? What codes, practices, themes and narrative techniques are significant for novelizations of text-image source texts?

There is a small but significant discussion on Chabon’s Kavalier and Clay (2001), or Jay Cantor’s Krazy Kat (1994) as well as Thomas Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow (1973), but not much on Tom de Have’s Funny Papers (1985), Frederic Teuten’s Tintin in the New World (1993), Rick Moody’s Ice Storm (1994), Austin Grossman’s Soon I will be invincible (2007). More work is clearly needed, including on lost Anglophone texts, as well as sites from other cultural traditions.

We certainly need also to start to evaluate Francophone and other non-Anglophone examples. Do the novelists who also work with BD separate out their two fields of activity or work with more intermedial techniques? For example does Jean Teulé’s Bord Cadrage (2009) work as a complex play between forms? Not to mention work from Harry Morgan (alias Christian Wahl), who is a novelist, BD writer and theorist of comics. And what about the growing importance of Ludovic Debeurme, Benoit Peeters, François Rivière, Willy Mouele, and Joann Sfar? All of whom are working in spaces that sit between traditional fiction and the world of the comics. What about the novels in other languages? In Italian (e.g. Umberto Eco’s La Misteriosa Fiamma de la regina Loanna, 2004)? In Dutch? Spanish? German? Japanese? Also, if the comics world is dominated by male writers and male fans, are there women writers interested in subverting these phallocentric comics in their novels?

We invite papers on any aspect of this research question, including treatments of single authors or comparative works, theoretical engagements with underlying narratological and text-image questions, as well as cross-national expansions of the sense of the field. No special consideration is given for any cultural space, we encourage originality Similarly papers on the pre-existing tradition of children’s literature and its adaptation strategies are welcome such as Dave Eggers’s novelisation of Where the Wild Things are.

Guidelines submission

400-500 Word Abstracts are invited

for 30 September 2014

to Hugo Frey (h.frey@chi.ac.uk) and Chris Reyns-Chikuma (reynschi@ualberta.ca)

4000-5000 word essays to be completed after editorial selection for January 30 2015

The text will be published in a special issue of Image & Narrative after the traditional double blind review process.

Language: English or French

Scientific committee

  • Jean-Paul Gabilliet, professeur à Bordeaux 3, France
  • Karin Kukkonen, postdoc, Turku, Finland
  • William Kuskin, professor at the U. of Colorado, Boulder, USA
  • Nicolas Labarre, maître de conférence, Bordeaux 3, France
  • Benjamin Noys, reader in English at university Chichester, England
  • Sophie Milquet, Maître de conférence, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgique


  • Tuesday, September 30, 2014


  • bande dessinée, roman, comics, manga, adaptation, novelisation, narration, influence, transfert


  • Chris Reyns-Chikuma
    courriel : reynschi [at] ualberta [dot] ca
  • hugo frey
    courriel : h [dot] frey [at] chi [dot] ac [dot] uk

Information source

  • Chris Reyns-Chikuma
    courriel : reynschi [at] ualberta [dot] ca


CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« The graphic novel », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Tuesday, September 02, 2014, https://doi.org/10.58079/qrp

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