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Jones Jr., William B. Classics Illustrated: A cultural history. 2nd ed. Jefferson, London: McFarland, 2011. 
Added by: joachim (7/20/09, 1:34 AM)   Last edited by: joachim (4/10/12, 12:45 PM)
Resource type: Book
Language: en: English
ID no. (ISBN etc.): 978-0-7864-3840-2
BibTeX citation key: JonesJr2002a
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Categories: General
Keywords: "Classics Illustrated", Adaptation, Literature
Creators: Jones Jr.
Publisher: McFarland (Jefferson, London)
Views: 18/576
From 1941 to 1971, the well-loved yet controversial “Classics Illustrated” series brought abridged, comics-style versions of literary masterpieces such as Homer's Odyssey, Shakespeare's Hamlet, Goethe's Faust, and Hugo's Les Miserables to millions of children and adults worldwide. Founded by Russian Jewish immigrant Albert Kanter at the dawn of the “Golden Age” of comics, the series used the comic-book form to introduce young readers to the works of Melville, Dickens, Stevenson, Twain and other authors. This work tells the story of Kanter's enterprise and examines the cultural significance of the most successful publication of its kind in the context of the times in which it was published. Attention is given to the evolving mission of “Classics Illustrated” to bring serious literature to popular culture; the publication's ability to stand up to the anti-comics hysteria of the early 1950s; the growth of subsidiary educational series encompassing folklore, mythology, history, and science; and the unsuccessful attempts to revive the series in the 1990s. The careers and contributions of each of the artists are covered, and the text is supplemented by quotations from exclusive interviews and correspondence with such illustrators as George Evans, Gray Morrow, Lou Cameron, Norman Nodel and Rudolph Palais. Detailed appendices provide artist attributions and the contents of each issue in every Classics Illustrated-related series. More than 200 illustrations offer a generous sample of what drew millions of readers to “the World's Finest Juvenile Publication”.

A significant expansion of the critically acclaimed first edition, Classics Illustrated: A Cultural History, 2d ed., carries the story of the Kanter family’s series of comics-style adaptations of literary masterpieces from 1941 into the 21st century. This book features additional material on the 70-year history of Classics Illustrated and the careers and contributions of such artists as Alex A. Blum, Lou Cameron, George Evans, Henry C. Kiefer, Gray Morrow, Rudolph Palais, and Louis Zansky. New chapters cover the recent Jack Lake and Papercutz revivals of the series, the evolution of Classics collecting, and the unsung role of William Kanter in advancing the fortunes of his father Albert’s worldwide enterprise. Enhancing the lively account of the growth of “the World’s Finest Juvenile Publication” are new interviews and correspondence with editor Helene Lecar, publicist Eleanor Lidofsky, artist Mort Kunstler, and the founder’s grandson John “Buzz” Kanter.
Detailed appendices provide artist attributions, issue contents and, for the principal Classics Illustrated-related series, a listing of each printing identified by month, year, and highest reorder number. New U.S., Canadian and British series have been added. More than 300 illustrations—most of them new to this edition—include photographs of artists and production staff, comic-book covers and interiors, and a substantial number of original cover paintings and line drawings.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments (ix)
Introduction: “Good Stories” (1)

I. Albert Kanter’s Dream (9)
II. Of Musketeers and Mohicans: The Jacquet Shop (17)
III. Louis Zansky: The Painter’s Touch (26)
IV. Eccentricity Abounding: The War Years (35)
V. Arnold Lorne Hicks: Transitional Figure (42)

Between pages 48 and 49 are eight pages containing 22 color plates

VI. Enter Iger: The Fiction House Artists (49)
VII. Henry Carl Kiefer and the Classics House Style (63)
VIII. Alex A. Blum: “A Prince of a Man” (76)
IX. A “Newer, Truer Name”: The Late Forties (90)
X. Blood, Sweat, and Rudy Palais (104)
XI. Painted Covers and an Extra Nickel: The Early Fifties (111)
XII. Maurice del Bourgo: A “Man’s World Artist” (131)
XIII. Canonical Matters and Classical Curiosities (135)
XIV. Lou Cameron: “If John Wayne Had Drawn Comic Books” (144)
XV. Norman Nodel: “A Certain Integrity” (153)
XVI. From the Crypt to the Classics: The EC Era (165)
XVII. George Evans, Reed Crandall, and the Tradition of EC Realism (182)
XVIII. Roberta the Conqueror (197)

Between pages 200 and 201 are eight pages containing 26 color plates

IX. High Tide and Greenbacks: The Late Fifties (201)
XX. Gerald McCann: The Colors of the Sky (213)
XXI. Gray Morrow: “Real People and Real Events” (217)
XXII. “Roberta’s Reforms”: The Early Sixties (222)
XIII. William E. Kanter: About a Son (240)
XXIV. Five Little Series and How They Grew: Picture Progress; Classics Illustrated Junior; Classics Illustrated Special Issues; The World Around Us; The Best from Boys’ Life Comics (244)
XXV. “Frawley’s Folly”: The Twin Circle Era (1967–1971) (270)
XXVI. Classics Abroad: The Worldwide Yellow Banner (274)
XXVII. The Wilderness Years: The Seventies and Eighties (280)
XXVIII. Great Expectations: First Publishing’s Graphic Novels (283)
XXIX. “Your Doorway to the Classics”: Acclaim’s Study Guides (291)
XXX. Restoration: Jack Lake Productions and Papercutz (294)
XXXI. Classics Collected: Notes on the Evolution of a Pastime and a Passion (299)
XXXII. Classical Coda (306)
Notes (309)

A. Classic Comics and Classics Illustrated (317)
B. Classics Illustrated Giant Editions (334)
C. Fast Fiction/Stories by Famous Authors Illustrated (334)
D. Classics Illustrated Educational Series (335)
E. Picture Parade/Picture Progress (335)
F. Classics Illustrated Junior (336)
G. Classics Illustrated Special Issues (342)
H. The Best from Boys’ Life Comics (343)
I. The World Around Us (344)
J. British Classics Illustrated, First and Second Series (349)
K. Classics Illustrated, Second Series (Berkley/First) (353)
L. Classics Illustrated, Third Series, Study Guides (Acclaim) (353)
M. Classics Illustrated, Fourth Series (Jack Lake) (355)
N. Classics Illustrated Junior, Second Series (Jack Lake) (357)
O. Classics Illustrated Special Issues, Second Series (Jack Lake) (359)
P. British Classics Illustrated, Third Series (359)
Q. Papercutz Classics Illustrated DeLuxe Editions (360)
R. Papercutz Classics Illustrated Editions (360)
S. Correspondence Between Roberta Strauss and the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, re: The Dark Frigate (360)
T. Letter from Roberta Strauss Feuerlicht to E. Nelson Bridwell (361)

Bibliography (363)
Index (367)
Added by: joachim  Last edited by: joachim
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