Work in Progress
Our project consists of exploring the Francophone newspapers in the Canadian West in order to find and analyze all comic strips published in them between 1900 to 1950. Fortunately, they have been digitized in the Peel’s Prairie collection. When identified, our goal is first, to save these strips onto a separate file and secondly, to analyse them according to quantitative and qualitative criteria. I will organize them according to various criteria (authorship; gender; genre; original language; nationality), and incidentally find out to which extent these Western Franco-Canadian strips better resisted the « invasion » of American syndicated comics. This research will shine a new light on marginal comics (which will then also in turn give a new understanding on the more mainstream ones) as much as on the topics that they represent. Because at least some were produced locally and published daily or weekly, they were more directly involved in the society that read them than the ones in books that take often months to be created or coming from abroad (mainly the USA). Finally, this project is part of a much larger research which is a systematic analysis of all the agents (from authors, publishers, to comics festival organizers) contributing to the Canadian Comics World based on sociologist Howard Becker’s Art Worlds (1988).