Comic books are such a part of popular culture today that almost anyone will have read them at some point of their lives. It hasn’t been unheard of for you to be able to study the craft in places like Japan, but it must be a first for any university to offer the subject as a Masters Degree.
Of course, there is one place that has taken on the following and that is the Dundee University in Scotland. The University is now offering a one-year Masters in Comic Studies would be launched by its English department in September 2011.
The program is said to have been build on the “strong local traditions” of the local comic book industry of Dundee. World famous comics like Dennis the Menace, Desperate Dan and the Broons were all born in the city.
The students will be studying script writing and artwork, to enhance their practical skills on the creative side of making comics. At the same time, they will also be learning about the impact of comics on the worlds of art, literature and popular culture. One of the modules will even look at autobiographical comics, while another examines the relationship between international comics cultures.
The degree program will be led by Dr Chris Murray, one of the UK’s leading authorities on comics, and editor of the Studies in Comics journal. He says that employability is aim of the course, as it is with every other postgraduate program out there.
Students who have finished the Masters course can advance onto a PhD in comic studies.
Imagine that, a PhD in comic studies. Definitely not something I would have imagined happening say a decade ago.