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Visual Storytellling

An Illustrated Reader

Todd James Pierce and Ryan G. Van Cleave

Publication Date - 14 December 2015

ISBN: 9780199380046

528 pages
7 x 10 inches

In Stock

Exploring themes of identity, media, violence, and family through graphic narrative


Visual Storytelling features a comprehensive survey of contemporary graphic narratives that encourages reflection, discussion, and various response projects in the writing or literature classroom. With its thematic organization, Visual Storytelling uses graphic narrative to identify intersections not just between visual and verbal language, but also between the overarching themes of identity, history, politics, and the arts.


  • Promotes critical literacy by offering diverse, relatable, and thought-provoking subject matter
  • Appeals to students raised in a visual culture in which comics retain a cachet unavailable to traditional literature
  • Provokes students to read the space between text and image to generate and answer questions about art, life, and the intersection(s) between the two
  • Invites students to question what constitutes literary merit

About the Author(s)

Todd James Pierce is Professor of English and Co-Director of the Creative Writing program at California Polytechnic State University.

Ryan G. Van Cleave teaches writing, literature, and media studies at the Ringling College of Art and Design.


"This book offers unique ways to conceptualize project-based learning tasks. Students and teachers witll have fun with a book like this!" --Craig Cleinman, City College of San Francisco

Table of Contents


    "Love Me Forever! Oh! Oh! Oh!"
    Jeremy Sorese

    Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood
    Marjane Satrapi

    "How to Understand Israel"
    Sarah Glidden

    Leela Corman


    "In the Rough"
    Vanessa Davis

    "The Dead of Winter"
    Debbie Drechsler

    "Cecil and Jordan in New York"
    Gabrielle Bell

    "63 Rue de la Grange aux Belles"
    François Avril and Philippe Petit-Roulet

    "The Hero"
    Brent Anderson

    "La Brea Woman"
    Martin Cendreda

    Kevin Huizenga


    Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic
    Alison Bechdel

    "Amy was a Babysitter"
    Gabrielle Bell

    "San Francisco"
    Lynda Barry

    "When I Was Eleven"
    Gabrielle Bell

    "The Bank"

    "Blue Note" (excerpt from Fantastic Life)
    Kevin Mutch

    "Dance with the Ventures"
    Jonathan Bennett

    4. TRAUMA

    The Harlem Hellfighters
    Max Brooks and Caanan White

    "Complacency Kills," from Journalism
    Joe Sacco

    Notes for a War Story

    The Alcoholic
    Jonathan Ames and Dean Haspiel

    Cancer Made Me a Shallower Person: A Memoir in Comics
    Miriam Engelberg

    5. HISTORY

    "A Short History of America"
    Robert Crumb

    Annie Sullivan and the Trials of Helen Keller
    Joseph Lambert

    A Bintel Brief: Love and Longing in Old New York
    Liana Finck

    John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Nate Powell

    Michael Cho

    My Friend Dahmer


    "Ready to Die"
    Kim Deitch

    A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge
    Josh Neufeld

    "Ceci N'est Pas une Comic"
    Peter Kuper

    "In the Shadow of No Towers"
    Art Spiegelman

    "The War on Fornication"
    Peter Bagge

    7.THE ARTS

    Stop Forgetting to Remember: The Autobiography of Walter Kurtz
    Peter Kuper

    "Fiction Versus Nonfiction"
    Chris Ware

    Further Readings

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