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18 November 2018

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Komiks: Comic Art in Russia

by Jose Alaniz (Univ. Press of Mississippi, $38)

A detailed look at an artistic subculture that can trace its roots back to lubok and icon painting. Comics (sequential narratives combining text and images) were on the outs in the Soviet era – seen to be a bourgeois diversion, and overshadowed by the art of film. But they survived underground and thrived whenever there was a loosening of controls. Alaniz looks at the form’s full history, from its tsarist legacy through post-war liberalizations and the boom of the post-Soviet era. Loaded with great examples, in both black and white and color.

— Paul E. Richardson

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Reviewed in Russian Life: Sep/Oct 2015