Report 1: Topic and Rationale for Graphic Novel Paper

DUE DATE: Friday, Feb. 3 by 11:59 PM in Moodle 

For this assignment you will be asked to write a brief, 1-2 page summary and analysis (template below) of your potential graphic novel selection. The purpose of this will be to help you begin your investigation of text by viewing it through the lens of performing a “textual analysis”

Textual AnalysisThis is the method of communication that researchers use to describe and interpret the characteristics of a recorded or visual message. When engaging in a textual analysis, your PURPOSE is to describe the content, structure, and functions of the messages contained in different texts.

Your analysis should help open you up to the insights you will need in order to discover the Research Question that will help form your Thesis Statement that will guide your Research Paper.


Getting Started on a Textual Analysis

How to get started, well, with questions—

Here are some starting questions you can ask:

What kinds of questions can/should we ask when analyzing, exploring, and reading graphic novels?

You can use these questions to open up and begin to figure out what you want to talk about with regards to the research you want to do with your graphic novel. You can use several of these questions as the basis of your actual research paper.

General Questions

  • What was your first reaction to what you saw?
  • What did you think of the quality of the art? What did you think about the quality of the story?
  • Do you know anyone that might like to read this graphic novel? Why is that?
  • Who might be the audience for book like this?
  • What, if anything, might someone learn from reading what you saw?
  • Did you see anything that would cause you to hesitate to purchase a particular title? If so, what did you see and why would you hesitate? Have you purchased books that included similar subject matter? Movies? What’s the difference?
  • Can you imagine someone in your community objecting to one of the books that you saw? How would you respond?

Research and Analysis Questions

Questions of Plot

  • What is the unique story that the graphic novel aims to tell?
  • What is the significance of that story?
  • Who are the characters?
  • Where is the story set (place and time)?
  • Is the story inspired by events in real life?

Questions of Aesthetics

  • Is there something unique and interesting about the art style of the graphic novel?
  • How does the art of the graphic novel affect the reader?
  • Does the art have a specific impact or purpose?

Questions of Layout/Arrangement

  • What is the arrangement or way in which the graphic novel tells its story?
  • Is the arrangement of the story affect how it is read?
  • Does the arrangement enhance or limit comprehension of the story?

Questions of Style

  • How can you analyze the way that the author and artist seek to communicate their message in the graphic novel?
  • Are their levels to the style?
  • How does the stylereach or not reach an intended audience?

Questions of Genre

  • What genre of story is your graphic novel? Horror? Superhero? Romance? Memoir?
  • Is your graphic novel a mixed genre? If so, what genres?
  • What are the elements of that genre?
  • How are those elements depicted in the graphic novel?
  • What are the tropesand figures of your graphic novel?

Questions of Interpretation

  • Is there an argument the authors are trying to make in their graphic novel?
  • What is that argument?
  • Do they use cause and effect?
  • Are the author’s wishing to compare and contrast something?

UTEP – Ways of Analyzing

TEMPLATE: Report 1 Assignment Sheet

EXAMPLE: Report 1 Example