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date: 16 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter presents an overview of the development of historical narratives combining visual and textual elements in comic strips and graphic novels. History comics developed strongly during the 1940s and 1950s and became popular, in particular among young readers in Western Europe and North America. Having gained increased cultural respectability, comics more recently also obtained an adult audience. Two internationally renowned educational comics from the Anne Frank House, published in the first decade of the twenty-first century, illustrate how comics are nowadays capable of representing sensitive topics from recent history, in particular World War II and the Holocaust. Yet, combining fact and fiction requires a balanced way of (re)presenting, involving discussions among historians and others on what may be possible and desirable in this specific war of making history public.

Keywords: history comics, comic strips, graphic novels, public history, Anne Frank House, World War II, Holocaust, translated editions

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