Tag Archives: Bosch Fawstin

Islam and Comics: Sensing a Trend?

The Burka Avenger

The Burka Avenger

Part of Rao’s modus operandi is to catch religion and comics stories in the news as they happen and save them to a repository for later re-reading, analysis, and then write up. Of course, while that allows for cautious commentary and limited knee-jerk reaction, it also can cause a back-up of reportable items, sometimes having them fall completely off the radar.

In this case, however, there’s been another intriguing effect to this scheme: The backlog of reportable items is hinting at a trend.

That is, despite coverage over the last several months of, say, the Muslim Superhero Tournament on The Huffington Post or a politician claiming Batman is only for Judeo-Christians, still a massive amount of news concerning Islam and comics has amassed for Rao “backstage.” More than any other religion, Islam seems to have the most constant, news-worthy engagement with the medium, over any other faith or community circa 2013. For instance:

Response to the Burka Avenger is still unfolding, but, unquestionably, it will be met with a steady stream of new news stories on comics engagement with Islam globally, culturally, artistically, and politically. They are everywhere.

Rao wants to know: Does modern Islam have a special relationship with the comics medium?

Advertisements

ReligionLink Targets Comics, Misses a Lot

ReligionLink.com is, by its own description, “a non-partisan service of Religion Newswriters” that is “by journalists, for journalists.” So, it’s understandable that they encourage religion writers to think further on the intersection of the comics-based genre of superheroes and religion in recognition of Superman’s 75th anniversary and new film. Clearly, Rao endorses this viewpoint, too.

However, the “background and expert sources” they claim to provide prove sadly lacking; though lengthy and exhaustive-looking, it reads as the result of Google searching and Amazon browsing rather than an actual, knowledgeable resource. Their list of recommended books leaves out any title that isn’t Judeo-Christian, and, similarly, their article list includes one mention of Islam in regards to coverage of The 99; likewise, their manifest of three dozen experts seems to only include one focusing on Arabs (the esteemed Fedwa Malti-Douglas) and one on occult practices (the weirdly unattributed Christopher Knowles). They even get Professor Malti-Douglas’s URL wrong!

ReligionLink on Superheroes

But it’s easy to criticize. What else should have been there? Well… Continue reading