Many of us will admit that ‘comics’ were a big thing in our lives at one point or another. Today’s comic reader is more likely to be a 20 or 30 or even 40 something than they are to be a teenager especially if we are talking about the Middle East.
The Economics of November 8, 2014 ran an article “Laughing at the humorless” (see: http://www.economist.com/news/middle-east-and-africa/21631198-regions-artists-are-mocking-jihadists-laughing-humourless?fsrc=scn/tw/te/pe/pe, which is also the photo source) which addressed how the “region’s comics have long used subtle satire to criticize their authoritarian regimes, yet with little success in effecting change.
The Middle East is certainly nothing to laugh at, especially these days. Much of the cultural and sociological norms there remain a mystery to Western audiences even those charged with influencing the region.
It strikes me that comics can be an effective way to gradually influence behavior. If I could wave a magic wand I would create a credible lead character whose trials and tribulations are captured in comics that are easily related to by a Middle East audience.
We talk about videos going viral and getting hundreds of thousands of views, I wonder if support to rising comic authors makes sense as a logical part of US Middle East influence efforts.
Comments are very much encouraged.