Encyclopedia of Contemporary French Culture

By Alex Hughes; Keith Reader | Go to book overview

See also: beur writing; francophone cinema: North Africa; suburbs


Further reading

c
CinémAction/hommes & migrations (1990) special issue 56 (July) Cinéma métis: de Hollywood aux films beurs (an early overview).

beur comics

Comics by Beurs, or Maghrebi-French (i.e. French of North African Arabic or Berber descent), usually focus on France as a post-colonial, multiethnic nation. The most prominent Maghrebi-French cartoonist is Farid Boudjellal, an artist of Algerian heritage who has published numerous individual comic books and collaborative works. His comics sometimes draw on the fantastic substance of traditional Arabic tales, e.g. Djinn (Genie) and on humour and caricature, e.g. the four-album Juif-Arabe (Jew-Arab) series, but he is also known for his realist-style saga that tells the story of the Slimani family, which emigrated from Algeria to France, recounted in L'Oud (The Oud), Le Gourbi (The Hovel), Ramadân, Gags a l'harissa (Harissa-Flavoured Gags) and Jambon-Beur: les couples mixtes (Ham-Beur/Butter: Mixed Couples). In his comics, Boudjellal tackles the complex issues at the heart of immigration and Maghrebi-French cultural hybridity, by examining mixed couples, gender roles, the composition of Islam in France and anti-Maghrebi racism. His Ramadân won the Résistance prize at the 1989 Angoulême national comics festival.

Cartooning by Maghrebin artists who take immigration issues in France as their subject matter dates back at least to the 1970s, and includes Saladin's Les migrations de Djeha: les nouveaux immigrés (The Migrations of Djeha: The New Immigrants), whose principal character, an immigrant to France named Djeha, was borrowed from North African folk tales. Saladin's comic book and Boudjellal's Les soirées d'Abdulah: Ratonnade (Abdulah's Evenings:RatHunt/Beating up an Arab) exemplify an initial crop of comics that depicted the lives of single, male Maghrebi immigrant workers. A subsequent Beur moment in comics occurred in the early to mid-1980s, when Maghrebi-French cartoonists, who had grown up in France and called it home came of age, participated in the effervescence of the Beur political and cultural movement and began to address the concerns of their own generation. Cartoonists who then shared time in the spotlight included Rasheed, Sabeurdet and Larbi Mechkour, an artist who drew Les Beurs (The Beurs), a series of humorous sketches, dosed with fantasy, about life in the housing projects (storyline by Boudjellal). Since that period, few comic books by Maghrebi-French artists have made it into print, excepting those of Boudjellal. However, other comic books of note include Homicide, a hallucinatory murder story set in Marseille, drawn by Kamel Khelif (storyline by Amine Medjdoub), and Le Monde merveilleux des Barbus (The Marvellous World of the Bearded Ones), which satirizes the Islamic movement and was drawn by Slim, an exiled Algerian cartoonist living in France.

MARK MCKINNEY

See also: beur writing; comic strips/cartoonists


Further reading

d
Douglas, A. and Malti-Douglas, F. (1994) Arab Comic Strips: Politics of an Emerging Mass Culture, Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press (includes analyses of comics by Boudjellal, Mechkour and Slim).

m
McKinney, M. (1997) 'Métissage in PostColonial Comics,' in A.G. Hargreaves and M. McKinney (eds) Post-Colonial Cultures in France, London: Routledge, pp. 169-88 (a study of the post-colonial thematic in comics by Boudjellal, Mechkour, and others).

-66-

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Encyclopedia of Contemporary French Culture
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface x
  • Introduction xi
  • Acknowledgements xiii
  • Classified Contents List xiv
  • A 1
  • Further Reading 3
  • Further Reading 13
  • Further Reading 18
  • Further Reading 26
  • Further Reading 27
  • Further Reading 30
  • B 44
  • Further Reading 66
  • Further Reading 70
  • Major Works 79
  • C 85
  • Further Reading 91
  • Further Reading 99
  • Further Reading 111
  • Further Reading 113
  • D 135
  • Further Reading 144
  • Further Reading 150
  • Major Works 152
  • E 168
  • Further Reading 194
  • F 197
  • Further Reading 200
  • Further Reading 207
  • Major Works 214
  • Further Reading 245
  • G 252
  • Further Reading 279
  • Further Reading 280
  • H 283
  • I 290
  • Further Reading 297
  • J 302
  • Further Reading 303
  • Major Works 307
  • K 310
  • Further Reading 317
  • L 318
  • Major Works 324
  • Major Works 325
  • M 350
  • Further Reading 352
  • Further Reading 354
  • Major Works 364
  • Further Reading 379
  • Further Reading 380
  • N 388
  • Further Reading 397
  • O 401
  • P 404
  • Further Reading 419
  • Major Works 424
  • Q 449
  • R 450
  • Further Reading 462
  • Further Reading 469
  • Major Works 470
  • Major Works 472
  • Further Reading 474
  • S 478
  • Further Reading 484
  • Further Reading 508
  • T 515
  • U 540
  • V 544
  • Further Reading 549
  • Further Reading 554
  • W 555
  • Further Reading 560
  • X 568
  • Y 569
  • Index 572
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