“Graphic and Digital Keats: ‘La Belle Dame sans Merci’ in Poetry Comics” – An Article by Brian Bates

labelledame31detailBrian Bates, a Romanticism scholar teaching at Cal Poly State University in San Luis Obispo, California, has published an article on the subject of three graphic adaptations of John Keats’s 1819 poem, “La Belle Dame Sans Merci.” Along with my own version of the poem, Bates also looks at two captivating adaptations created by the cognitive scientist and comics artist Neil Cohn. The article appears in  the latest issue of  “Reconstruction,” a peer-reviewed interdisciplinary online journal. You can read it here: http://reconstruction.eserver.org/Issues/161/Bates.shtml

I couldn’t have asked for a closer and more insightful reading of my adaptation than that offered by Brian Bates in this article, and indeed he points out many things in the comicthat I was not consciously aware of having put into it. My adaptation was created all the way back in 2009, and there were many points in my reading of Bates’s article in which I felt myself wishing I could go back and redraw the comic so as to develop more fully some of the visual strategies he identifies.

You can find one of Neil Cohn’s versions of “La Belle Dame Sans Merci” in Volume 2 of “The Graphic Canon: The Classics of World Literature as Comics and Visuals” (Seven Stories Press, 2012), whereas my own adaptation appears, in French translation, in the French edition of that same anthology, “Le canon graphique” (Éditions Télémaque, 2013).

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