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Drawing New Color LinesTransnational Asian American Graphic Narratives$
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Monica Chiu

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9789888139385

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888139385.001.0001

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The “Japaneseness” of OEL Manga

The “Japaneseness” of OEL Manga

On Japanese American Comics Artists and Manga Style

(p.226) (p.227) 11 The “Japaneseness” of OEL Manga
Drawing New Color Lines

Angela Moreno Acosta

Hong Kong University Press

While Asian American graphic artists often grapple with the politics of identity, as iterated throughout this collection, Acosta argues that OEL manga, an amalgamation of Asian American and Japanese popular print cultures that might provide a ready and authentic Japaneseness for Japanese American artists, is a visual style and not a politics. After thoroughly explaining manga’s conventions (reading practices, visual cues, page layout, and the driving influence of a strong fan base), and after mapping the rocky history of manga and OEL manga in the United States, Acosta’s argument revisits and revises how race and manga work, or how manga’s iteration of an “authentic Japaneseness” interrupts the American notion of an “ethnic” work created by an “ethnic” author. Rather, she concludes, OEL manga contributes to the changing parameters of American comics not by introducing a Japanese perspective and thus limning an artist’s so-called inherited Japanese sensibility, but by adhering to accepted manga conventions and referencing Asian media and pop culture material objects that find their way into OEL manga.

Keywords:   Asian American, Graphic novels, Comic Artists, Race, Asia, America, Caricatures, Manga, Visual studies, Pop Culture

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