A Documentary Lays Bare the Gender Bias in Comics / Hyperallergic

Production still from Comics Undressed’s Kickstarter video (all images via Kickstarter promo unless otherwise noted)

Production still from Comics Undressed’s Kickstarter video (all images via Kickstarter promo unless otherwise noted)

CHICAGO — Any reader of comic books knows that accruing a diverse array of volumes is no easy feat. The first four comics on my bookshelves include Allison Bechdel’s 2006 autobiographical “tragicomic” Fun HomeAdrian Tomine’s Shortcomingsabout a man named Ben Tanaka dealing with questions about race and relationships, the nine-story collection Caricature by Daniel Clowes, and Joe Sacco’s Footnotes in Gaza, a journalistic account of events during the Suez War that is at times hard to readWithout even realizing it, I am included in a demographic identified by a Janelle Asselin poll that found that only 38% of the readership and 39% of comics creators are female. Why is it that comics continue to be read mostly as a white, heterosexual, and masculine medium when that’s clearly, totally, not at all the case?

For the answers to this, we turn to the Ladydrawers Comics Collective (AKA “The Ladydrawers”), which describes itself as “an unofficial affiliated group of women, men, transcoder, and non-binary gender folk who research, perform, and publish comics and texts about how economics, race, sexuality and gender impact the comics industry, other media, and our culture at large,” according to the collective’s website. Their forthcoming documentary Comics Undressed, directed and produced by Fran Syass and Lindsey Smith, addresses the economic, gender-based, and racial representation in the comics industryrecently surpassed its $15,000 Kickstarter goal by a sweet margin of $602.

Read the full story on Hyperallergic: http://hyperallergic.com/80331/a-new-documentary-lays-bare-the-gender-bias-in-comics/