24 November 2008

From the Research Files: Soviet Cartoons on the War Danger, 1934



Source: Moscow Daily News, 1934
Conditions of Discovery: Dissertation Research, 2007
Filed Under: Culture--Anti-fascism--War Danger

5 comments:

rootlesscosmo said...

Who was Jack Chen, and what became of him?

Buster said...

A full answer will be in my dissertation. The short answer is that he was the son of Eugene Chen, a Chinese Trinidadian lawyer who become Sun Yat-Sen's minister of foreign affairs. The whole Chen family ended up in Moscow for a good chunk of the interwar period. Jack later moved to China, before relocating to America (eventually to Berkeley) where he played a role in digging up Chinese-American history and art.

rootlesscosmo said...

I really want to read this, or any chapters that you might publish by way of teasers.

Buster said...

Don't worry, you're on my list.

I'll send you a conference paper I recently delivered later today.

But on to the real question--what's up with that first cartoon? I was kinda hoping that someone would say something about it, since it strikes me as a little curious. Now, I'm wondering if it is just me. The caricatured Japanese with thick glasses looking at a dead bird (a dove?) is the beginning. There's also something slightly awkward about the stacking of the two men that rubs me wrong. Really, nobody else thinks that that panel is, ummmm, strange?

rootlesscosmo said...

Well, now that you mention it... I think both men are being represented as unruly, destructive little boys--they're wearing shorts and the "German" has a slingshot stuck in his waistband. So maybe the "stacking" (besides referring to the news item about the collaborative frontier tour) continues this Katzenjammer Kids metaphor--individually each is too short to see over the wall, so they team up to do mischief.