Thursday, July 26, 2012

“Comics & Medicine: Navigating the Margins”

The third international interdisciplinary conference on comics and medicine continued to explore the intersection of sequential visual arts and medicine.  2012 highlighted the perspectives that are often under-represented in graphic narratives, such as depictions of the Outsider or Other in the context of issues such as barriers to healthcare, the stigma of mental illness and disability, and the silent burden of caretaking.

The conference featured keynote presentations by comics creators Joyce Brabner and Joyce Farmer. Brabner, a comics artist and social activist, collaborated with her late husband Harvey Pekar on the graphic novel Our Cancer Year (1994), which won a Harvey Award for best graphic novel. Farmer is a veteran of the underground comics scene who nursed her elderly parents through dementia and decline as shown in her graphic memoir Special Exits (2010), which won the National Cartoonists Society award for graphic novels.

Sandra Bell-Lundy, creator and cartoonist of BETWEEN FRIENDS, participated in a panel discussion on “The Role of Comics in Provider/Patient Communication.” The detailed program is here.

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