With regard to the comics in your local newspaper, what is reflected about American culture when relating to certain groups, males and females?
Observe the number of frames in the comic strip and count the number of words spoken by male and female (and other) characters. There are certain topics discussed when relating to male and females. In the comic strips there will probably be certain groups represented and some groups underrepresented or not represented at all.
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Comic strips reflect American culture and the groups within that culture according to the views of the artist who draws and writes the strip. Pickles, a 4 frame strip by Brian Crane, has an older man and his wife. The strip from May 17th has him saying 25 words with her saying 14 with her getting the upper hand though using fewer words. In the 3 frame strip Zits of the same date, the son uses 16 words while the mother uses 8 and the father 6. In Dennis the Menace, the 2 frame strip has Dennis using 14 while the girl uses 6. In all cases, one of the male characters uses the most words while the female characters react to the male's words. Old age, youth, conflict between generations, and conflict between the sexes are all topics used by cartoonists. I believe that comic strips avoid certain topics or groups as the strip can be dropped if the paper gets too many complaints. With the consolidation of ownership within the publishing industry, the major papers are owned by the same few corporations. Political cartoonists and controversial topics are often shoved aside for a safer strip unless the paper is independently owned and more of the underground, socially aware paper. Mental illness is a topic avoided as it is hard to be funny with a delicate touch of humor. The comic strips published in the mainstream papers stick mostly to the safer strips drawn by people who avoid controversial or adversarial topics about which readers could complain.
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