Analysis of an Individual Comic Strip

If you visit the website of a newspaper such as The Baltimore Sun, The New York Times, The Washington Post, etc., you should be able to search for comic strips or political cartoons easily.

Which techniques does the creator of the comic strip use? How does the creator make his/her point in the comic strip? What do we learn about the characters and/or ourselves from this comic strip or political cartoon? If colors are available, what do they tell us about this comic or cartoon? What language is used and how can that be interpreted?

And importantly, which of the key terms from the topic lesson can you discuss in your analysis? For example, how of elements of imagery, symbolism, metaphor, and/or irony help reveal the cartoon’s message?

As with all academic essays you write in this course, this essay should have a well-defined introduction with a thesis statement, body, and conclusion.

In essence, what are some of the physical elements present in the cartoon1 – characters, text, colors, etc., along with figurative elements such as metaphor and symbolism, that help to explain the cartoon’s message? It can be helpful to focus on a single element in the cartoon in its own body paragraph (including the element in the topic sentence and in the thesis) and describe how it portrays the cartoon’s message before moving to the next cartoon feature in a new paragraph.

Sample Thesis Statement: “John Smith uses (add one element from the cartoon), (add a second element from the cartoon), and (add a third element from the cartoon) to show (add the cartoon’s message).”

The guidelines for this assignment are as follows:

Length: The assignment should be at least 500 words.

Header: Include a header in the upper left-hand corner of your writing assignment with the following information:

  • Your first and last name
  • Course Title (Composition II)
  • Assignment name (i.e., Cartoon Analysis)
  • Current Date

Format:

  • MLA-style source documentation and Works Cited2
  • Your last name and page number in the upper-right corner of each page
  • Double-spacing throughout
  • Standard font (Times New Roman, Calibri)
  • Title, centered after heading
  • 1″ margins on all sides
  • Save the file using one of the following extensions: .docx, .doc, .rtf, or .txt

Underline your thesis statement in the introductory paragraph.

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