Manga and the mangaesque:  Exploring Japanese comics’ transnational perspective


6:00 PM - 7:30 PM


  • Time: 18:00-19:30
  • Date: Monday, 22 November 2021
  • Venue: HS436


When addressing Japanese comics, or manga, from an international scope, we usually face two different approaches: manga as rooted in Japan (produced in Japan for a Japanese audience within the framework of a serialised magazine) and manga as style: sequential art with a set of formal, utterly distinguishable elements, which ultimately interacts with a larger transcultural sphere. However, there are multiple ways to address manga, and while this dichotomous categorisation still remains a quite relevant and defining issue, it does not necessarily cover the entirety of the debate upon manga. Over the last decades, manga—understood both as style and a ‘movement’—has grown as a larger medium in numerous countries worldwide, raising questions about manga’s materiality, its deeper connections to the production issues, and the role of the so-called mangaesque, a concept that this talk will also address.

Sometimes the boundaries of the mangaesque become blurry, more complex and difficult to fix, especially when we discuss the work of transnational artists, or mangaesque works which do not mimic manga aesthetics and formal features but manga’s marketing and production issues. Over the last few years I have been working—through a set of case studies—on a research project focussing on the transnational traits of manga, of which this presentation provides a brief overview.


José Andrés Santiago Iglesias is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Vigo (Spain), working on expanded-field comics and manga and anime studies. Former fellow of the Japan Foundation’s Japanese Studies Program and invited researcher at Kyoto Seika University. He authored Manga. Del cuadro flotante a la viñeta japonesa (‘Manga: From floating images to Japanese comics panels’, Comanegra 2010) and co-edited Anime Studies: Media-specific approaches to Neon Genesis Evangelion (Stockholm U.P. 2021).

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