Thursday, October 06, 2005

The pamphlet and the noose

The problem of what comic books do to children, or rather what they have already done to a whole generation, is threefold. Its solution requires a knowledge of comic books, of the minds of children, and of the processes, the mechanisms, by which comic-book reading influences children. When, for example, a young child hangs himself and beneath the dead child is found an open comic book luridly describing and depicting a hanging (as has happened in a number of cases), the mechanics of the relationship between the two have to be investigated, e.g. the processes of imitation and experimentation in childhood.