How Manga conquered America

Posted by jerry on October 23rd, 2007 — Posted in Journal, Writing

Wired magazine online has a manga-format brief history of how that popular culture art-form went from being a marginal specialist import to a publishing phenomenon the likes of which would make Astro-boy (Tetsuwan Atom) proud. Wired has a download in PDF format. But there is a twist – the pdf is in traditional Japanese manga style so you read from back to front and right to left. Considering Manga’s influence on the early cyberpunk science fiction movement this is certainly a cultural form to take seriously. But you knew that already from the way manga is gradually creeping down the central aisles of most contemporary bookshops.

manga history

I suspect that the manga explosion is also in part a function of a growing sophisticated visual literacy – bourne of the web and fed by new media of all formats. But I like too the uncompromising aspect of the back-to front binding (great for left handed reading!).


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