South Asia

Organized Panel Session

1 - When Worlds Collide: Comics Culture and Library Culture in India

Saturday, July 7
8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Location: Silveroak I, Ground Floor

Comics are an important part of the popular cultural heritage of countries all over Asia, including India. For a variety of reasons, including reasons relating to comics culture and library culture in India and abroad, Indian comics are underrepresented in library collections. This makes it difficult for scholars to access this vital piece of India’s cultural heritage and leaves it vulnerable to erasure. This study is a qualitative study based on observations and interviews conducted at Comic Con India in New Delhi in 2016. This study gathers the perspectives of different stakeholders including publishers, artists, scholars, and fans in order to understand the current status and circulation of Indian comics, especially at points of convergence and divergence with libraries and academia in India. By exploring how comics are being consumed in India and the ways they are used by casual readers and scholars alike, we can better understand what is at stake if libraries and cultural institutions do not collect and preserve these materials.

Mara L. Thacker

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, United States

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