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"they ridicule their own class"

The humor is very dark, but it’s there. If we lose that, we’ve lost everything.


my failed new yorker cartoon gag: I'll work on it...
New Yorker cartoons often ridicule the magazine’s readers. The presumed reader of The New Yorker was culturally literate, socially aware and empathetic. Cartoons often satirize the pieties of these readers as well as their self-centered dissatisfactions. "The most New Yorker magazine-ish cartoons are not making fun of the less fortunate, and they’re not faux rebellious, speaking ‘truth’ to power. Rather, they ridicule their own class—maybe, just maybe, producing some skepticism about its unconsciously held assumptions, and, if not an out-and-out laugh, then at least an out-and-out wry smile of recognition."

Há já algum tempo que julgamos gravitar para os cartoons editoriais, provavelmente em detrimento dos comix. Essa foi a nossa porta de entrada ao artigo de hoje, mas rapidamente desenterramos todos os tópicos do costume. Comix, cartoons, artsy, press, papel e digital, internet, privacidade e $$$. Como tudo se liga, vezes sem conta.

A propósito da saída do Mankoff como o editor de cartoons no New Yorker: o fim de um reinado. Pelo R.C. Harvey, no TCJ.

Mankoff pauses, an elaborately dramatic moment, and then says he’ll give ten bucks to anyone who can find a cartoon in back issues of The New Yorker that isn’t in the Complete Cartoons*.

[* The Complete Cartoons of the New Yorker, a nine-pound 656-page gargantuan compendium that prints 2,004 of the cartoons the magazine has published from its first issue, February 21, 1925, through the February 23, 2004 anniversary issue. This historic achievement comes equipped with two CDs that contain all 68,647 cartoons published during that period.]

Another pause. "Twenty bucks if you keep quiet about it," he snarls with a fiendish grin.
in "A Look Back at 20 Years of Mankoff’s New Yorker" 27 mar 2017
What kind of cartoon editor was Mankoff? Not bad, over the long haul.
in "A Look Back at 20 Years of Mankoff’s New Yorker" 27 mar 2017

O "over the long haul" é key. Ou aquele "not" seria muito mais problemático de defender entre críticos. Como reza a história, e onde lhe podemos ser generosos: não fechou as portas a novas gerações, quando teria sido fácil manter o status quo.

"Lee Lorenz handed me a plane on automatic co-pilot," Mankoff said of the established roster of talent. "People were ready to do this forever". But Mankoff came to a realization: he needed to cultivate a new crop of cartoonists. "This wonderful plane flying on autopilot needed some actual piloting or it was gong to run out of fuel".

But before any new cartoonists could get a foot in the door, Manoff said, "I need to open the door a bit wider. That’s why in 1998, I established Open-Call Tuesdays when anyone who wanted to show me cartoons could make an apointment to see me. Previously that privilege had been restricted to established New Yorker cartoonists. And a lot of fresh-faced aspirants did show up."
in "A Look Back at 20 Years of Mankoff’s New Yorker" 27 mar 2017

Mais, num gesto que apenas podemos admirar, incentivar, e fuck it, nós tentamos fazer a nossa parte nesse departamento - vide: aquilo dOS POSITIVOS enquanto zine para teen fazer sentido do mundo - não só o Manoff abre as portas a uma nova geração, como faz o que pode para as preparar:

But Mankoff realized showing up was not enough. These new talents needed cultivation. So instead of simply giving them rejection slips—the usual New Yorker cartoon tutorial—Mankoff started coaching them. "I realized that if all you ended up having were failures, all you would have learned is how to fail. So I broke the code of silence and became a real blabbermouth, giving aspiring cartoonists feedback and developing a mini-course in cartoon fundamentals and the psychology of humor."

Mankoff eased talented new cartoonists into the magazine a little before they were absolutely, unquestionably ready. "We were cutting new cartoonists some slack," he explains, "—doing some affirmative action, giving them some reinforcements to get them hooked on cartooning the way I had been."
in "A Look Back at 20 Years of Mankoff’s New Yorker" 27 mar 2017

Onde não lhe podemos ser generosos: fê-lo por uma questão de status, nevertheless. O fine print na narrativa acima, em dois bullet points: o resultado prático do seu pró-activismo, fosse ou não o resultado desejado por este, e como conseguiu esse emprego, intencionalmente desejado por ele:

  • Ironically, the more cartoonists Mankoff brought into the magazine, the fewer are published regularly.
  • Mankoff agreed to sell the Cartoon Bank (...) if The New Yorker would make him its cartoon editor. The magazine had a cartoon editor, Lee Lorenz, also a cartoonist, who had been at that post for 24 years. In order to give Mankoff the job, they’d have to fire Lorenz. And it was Lorenz who had brought Mankoff into the magazine’s stable of cartoonists. How much of an ingrate was Mankoff? Mankoff slides by this moral contretemps by saying, simply, that "Lorenz decided to retire later that year.

Coincidências... Continuando, outros highlights para remoer. A extrapolar da relação entre comix e cartoons entre as elites e dessas para o geist popular, se! quiséssemos fazer esse exercício hoje:

The New Yorker cartoon editor is no longer involved in picking the magazine’s cover illustration as of yore. That duty has fallen to a relatively new staff position, art editor, filled these days, and since its inception in the early 1990s under Tina Brown’s editorship, by Francoise Mouly, who, with her husband Art Spiegelman, is apparently responsible for bringing much new talent into the magazine, often recruiting from the ranks of Spiegelman’s underground cartoonist "gang" (as Mankoff termed it) whom she and Spiegelman promoted in their avant garde 1980s magazine, Raw.
in "A Look Back at 20 Years of Mankoff’s New Yorker" 27 mar 2017

Da essencia do cartoon:

Ideas, not artwork, sells the cartoons. "It’s not the ink," Mankoff intones, "it’s the think."

Da importância do cartoon enquanto meio.

The hallmark of all good single-panel cartoons: the picture is a puzzle, and the caption explains the puzzle. Or vice versa. The single-panel cartoon is the haiku of cartooning.

De cartoons e literatura: ainda que os primeiros seja já merecedores de consideração, ainda não são literatura...

Mankoff, I think, regards cartoonists, justifiably, as superior beings. After all, many cartoonists, he observes, can write passable prose; few journalists can draw acceptable cartoons.

Its cartoons also rank high on the cultural scale generally. But the New Yorker writers seem to stand higher in our sober Puritan work-ethic culture: serious reporting is closer to God than silly laughter.

Da relação do cartoon/imprensa:

New Yorker cartoons are topical (and always have been) but not as front-page topical as newspaper editorial cartoons.

Da evolução do cartoon/imprensa:

"In the early ’90s, the market for magazine cartoons was already not only drying up, but dried up. There was still the Everest of The New Yorker, but the rest of the markets were pretty much the equivalent of foothills." [And most of them were quickly giving up publishing cartoons.]

Do arty-fartsy (mas esta é toda nossa).

Mankoff explained the disappearance of cartoons from most magazines in those days by saying that "they’ve gotten over-designed—there’s no place for a cartoon."

Cartoons disappeared from magazines when art directors started controlling the content of the publications. Art directors like solids—solid colors, solid blacks, solid white space, and the solid "gray" of columns of type. Cartoons interfere with the cadence-counting impulse of page design by manipulation of solids.

Nós temos outras ideias porque os cartoons desapareceram dos jornais, mas não podíamos deixar passar em branco um bashin' aos arstys. Ainda no tópico de cartoons e imprensa, esta também tem o seu quê de desenvolvimento, e provavelmente faremos esse outro dia:

Mankoff since he became editor: "the biggest change was that cartoons, even of the very benign variety that appear in The New Yorker, now have great power to offend.

E enter tha webs.

As of 2011, the panel was the most reproduced cartoon from The New Yorker, and Steiner has earned over US$50,000 from its reprinting.
in "On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog" 28 mar 2017

É também, segundo o Mankoff, o primeiro cartoon do New Yorker publicado sobre a internet -5 jul 1993- e que marca um comin' of age desta. Da wiki:

The cartoon marks a notable moment in the history of the Internet. Once the exclusive domain of government engineers and academics, the Internet had by then become a subject of discussion in general interest magazines like The New Yorker. Lotus Software founder and early Internet activist Mitch Kapor commented in a Time magazine article in 1993 that "the true sign that popular interest has reached critical mass came this summer when the New Yorker printed a cartoon showing two computer-savvy canines".
in "On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog" 28 mar 2017

E como se liga às nossas teses?

The cartoon symbolizes an understanding of Internet privacy that stresses the ability of users to send and receive messages in general anonymity.
in "On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog" 28 mar 2017

E, perdoem-nos a literatura, mas merece ainda o registo antes que as actualizem: as entradas originais parecem ser de 2007 com referências anteriores à data - notem a inocência dos tempos sobre tech e big brother:

Lawrence Lessig suggests "no one knows" because Internet protocols do not force users to identify themselves; although local access points such as a user's university may, this information is privately held by the local access point and is not an intrinsic part of the Internet transaction.
in "On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog" 28 mar 2017

Estamos conversados sobre esses pontos locais? Mais...:

A study by Morahan-Martin and Schumacher on compulsive or problematic Internet use discusses this phenomenon, suggesting the ability to self-represent from behind the computer screen may be part of the compulsion to go online. The phrase can be taken "to mean that cyberspace will be liberatory because gender, race, age, looks, or even 'dogness' are potentially absent or alternatively fabricated or exaggerated with unchecked creative license for a multitude of purposes both legal and illegal", an understanding that echoed statements made in 1996 by John Gilmore, a key figure in the history of Usenet. The phrase also suggests the ability to "computer cross-dress" and represent oneself as a different gender, age, race, etc. On another level, "the freedom which the dog chooses to avail itself of, is the freedom to 'pass' as part of a privileged group; i.e. human computer users with access to the Internet".
in "On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog" 28 mar 2017

No excerto acima removemos os footnotes dos estudos citados, que são respectivamente: 2000, 2003, 1996, 1999, 2001, 2001, 2007. Hoje, entendemos esses comportamentos à luz de toda uma outra experiência - para contexto, o Facebook só se tornaria relevante do início da década que se seguiu. O resto dessa História acontece agora e depende também de ti, porque além das narrativas oficiais que branqueiam o passado, quando entramos nos detalhes notamos que esta é muito mais sujinha do que parece.


"A prime example of someone who was bullied, and then grew up to be a bully."

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