Monday, September 24, 2007

Here's an article from the C-ville weekly about the comic strip controversy that's been brewing at the Cavalier Daily, my alma mater's student newspaper.

Is former graphics editor/cartoonist Grant Woolard a racist? Probably not. Is the cartoon that got him into trouble dopey and culturally myopic? Oh, definitely. (The joke, in a nutshell: Ethiopians + hunger = funny).

I'm not interested in defending Woolard's strip. But I am interested in how the battle lines get drawn when these sorts of conflicts erupt in student-run media.

Scroll down and read the comments of my friend Jen Sorensen, who draws the alt-weekly strip Slowpoke.


Blogger Sean Tubbs said...

Is this in any way similar to Mike Wartella's NAACP reference that got out of hand in the Yellow Journal?

4:23 PM  
Blogger jhcudlin said...

That actually wasn't in the YJ--Mike, of his own volition, put up fliers around campus.

For those of you who have no idea what Sean is talking about--that would be just about everyone who didn't go to UVa in the early '90s: Mike Wartella designed a flier for a fictitious event called the corn rally, during which people would extoll the virtues of corn, dress like ears of corn, etc. Very silly.

At the bottom, he made the mistake of crediting the rally to the National Association for the Advancement of Corn Products (NAACP). Not the best, most culturally sensitive choice for an acronym: He received death threats for months afterwards, and had to publicly apologize to the University community--letters in the papers, public addresses, all kinds of stuff.

As in this case, it was all for a pretty dopey gag...and the response seemed more than a little disproportionate.

You can see Mike's cartoons in the Village Voice these days, and--egads!--on MTV2 as well. Go to his site:

5:46 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home