I’m writing a short right now which I’ll hopefully have done in the next few days or so. But for now here’s this: SuperPunch brought to my attention a very interesting collection of archived digital comic books on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln website. There are a total of 167 “Government Comic Books” (the site’s calling them) in their entirety on display at an offshoot of the campus library webpage. Some even date all the way back to the 40′s, where comic book legend Will Eisner drew many of them. Here are a few that caught my eye:
Bullets or Words, 1951 – This was apparently marketed for men/boys debating about joining the military. In it, it talks about the “current conflict in Korea”. Specifically, the US’ use of “psychological warfare” by flying planes overhead which often times aren’t even doing anything.
Fighting Apartheid: A Cartoon History, 1987 – I was actually really surprised by this government sponsored comic which tackles Apartheid both in South Africa and in history for younger audiences. And the artwork is beautiful.
Komrad Ivan, 1979 – Ah yes, the good old days of propaganda coming from both sides to achieve a world entrenched in fear. Those were the days. The Cold War was in full stride at this point, Regan had yet to step in taking full advantage, and apparently the government even made comics books for children to make them afraid of a guy named “Ivan”.
Check these out, they’re fascinating. Again, the link to the archive: HHHEEERRREEE