University of the Arts London
Stylistics in Comics.pdf (926.43 kB)

Jesse Prevoo - Stylistics in Comics - How Style can influence meaning in graphic narrative and visual communication

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conference contribution
posted on 2020-06-29, 15:49 authored by Jesse PrevooJesse Prevoo

In the study of literature, it is common practice to indicate changes in style, language, dialect or idiom and take these changes into account when analyzing texts. These things can tell us something about the text (when it was written, who the writer is, etc.) as well as about the story itself: who is speaking, to start. It can also indicate things about the character: his level of education, or her level of maturity, for instance. Through using a different language/dialect, it becomes possible to identify the character who is narrating/speaking. In Comics Studies, it seems, there is a lot less attention for these kinds of changes in style, while the impact these changes have can be just as great, and the information we can gather from the style of a text is very important in understanding the text. In this presentation, I will discuss how style can influence the narrative and message of a story, how the style of a text can convey information and how different styles within a single narrative influence the interpretation of the story – for better or for worse – by conveying information about narration, focalization and the likes.



Besides working as Datamanager at TNO (Netherlands), Jesse Prevoo tries to do some research into Comics (independent/self-funded/Leiden University). This research, he hopes, will one day culminate into a PhD-thesis, presented at Leiden University, where he took both Bachelor and Master in Literature, focusing on visual narratives – specifically reader interaction in Comics. He has published several articles (Frame: tijdschrift voor Literatuurwetenschap, The Comics Grid). His research focuses on narratology and the medium-specificities of Comics and/or Graphic Novels. As of yet, he has not created a Spidersona for himself, despite being a big fan of Spider-Man for as long as he can remember. Twitter: @superdeim Instagram: jesseprevoo LinkedIn: e-mail: