The Philosophy of J.H. Williams III

Hornsby, I. (2018) The Philosophy of J.H. Williams III. In: Comics Forum 2018, 20-21 September 2018, Leeds. (Unpublished)

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This paper is part of an ongoing research project which attempts to recognise comic books as philosophy. This approach resists interpreting comics as supplements to written works of philosophy or using comics as a convenient means by which to elucidate philosophical ideas. The project also moves away from interrogating comic books through already existing philosophical lenses. However, this doesn’t mean completely ignoring philosophical ideas, which clearly exist within the context from which comic books themselves are made and read, and which have an impact upon both their fabrication and interpretation. What I illustrate via theoretical, contextual, and practical undertakings, across multiple engagements with the comics we buy each and every Wednesday; is to appreciate how western notions of ontology, our definitions concerning the nature of existence, and epistemology, our knowledge of the world; have been radically transformed through our fabrication of, and encounters with, the form and content of comic books. This claim suggests that our engagement with graphic narratives has caused a measurable shift in our interpretation of space-time, image and text, as well as our grasp of psychology, ethical questions, aesthetic sensibilities, and styles of composition, in what I term the ‘combined intensity’ of the comic book.
In this paper I interrogate the artist J.H. Williams III, from his work on Sandman Overture (2013-15) and Promethea (2000-2005) looking in detail at how his use of colour, composition, acting, story-telling, and use of text within the image, give the reader a unique, and original philosophical interpretation of the world.

Publication Type: Conference or Workshop Items (Paper)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BH Aesthetics
N Fine Arts > NC Drawing. Design. Illustration
Divisions: Academic Areas > Institute of Arts and Humanities > Theatre
Event Title: Comics Forum 2018
Event Location: Leeds
Event Dates: 20-21 September 2018
Depositing User: Ian Hornsby
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2018 12:58
Last Modified: 18 Oct 2018 12:58

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