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Columbia Missourian

Lecture to discuss graphic memoirs

By Kelsey Allen
September 22, 2008 | 6:53 p.m. CDT

 COLUMBIA — Stephens College required all of its incoming students to read a book over the summer, but it wasn't a classic such as "The Great Gatsby." This year, students had to read the graphic memoir "Persepolis."

"We didn't have any parent, so far as I know, call up and say ‘why did you assign a comic book?' because that's kind of what it looks like," Judith Clark, English department chair, said.

If You Go

What: Lecture: The Graphic Memoir as/and Contemporary Literature.

When: 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday.

Where: Windsor Auditorium, Stephens College, 1405 E. Broadway.

"Persepolis" is the memoir of Marjane Satrapi. Using pictures and text, Satrapi tells the story of her life growing up in Tehran in the middle of the Islamic Revolution.  

On Wednesday, the English and Creative Writing Department at Stephens is hosting a lecture by Andrew Hoberek, an associate professor of English and director of Graduate Studies at MU.

Clark said she is hoping to hear what Hoberek has to say about the rise in popularity of graphic novels, particularly the graphic memoir.

"We are interested in the phenomenon of graphic literature becoming mainstream," Clark said. "Is it affecting contemporary literature? Is it influencing contemporary literature? Is it contemporary literature?"

The goal of the lecture is to inform students and the public on how the graphic novel and memoir fit into the literary world, Clark said. The lecture will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday in Windsor Auditorium and is open to the public.