Chinese Comic Books
Chinese comic books (连环画) are a popular medium to entertain and to educate the public in China. The content ranges from Chinese literary classics, fiction, non-fiction, translated literature; historical fiction, fairy tales, myths, folklore, biography, etc. With the increasing research interest on Chinese visual art, popular culture, and media, the value of the comic books as research materials has caught a lot attention among academics in recent years. At Stanford East Asia library, we have about 300 comic books. Of this special collection, the majority were published after 1949, from 50s to 70s and during the Cultural Revolution — a time when politics penetrated every aspect of social life. The comic book, as a popular medium of expression, was no exception. The content and artistic presentations of the comic books during this historical period are popular topics for the study of modern Chinese history, Communist propaganda, and the relationships between politics, art, and education.