Occam’s Razor

The definition of what a comic is, the “juxtaposed pictorial and other images in deliberate sequence, intended to convey information and/or produce an aesthetic response in the viewer” seems a bit too much. I mean, I’ve looked up what other people’s definitions for comics were and either they were similar to that, using similar words or trying way too hard to hone in on exactly what a comic book is, or they were too vague like simply saying a comic book was a magazine containing a sequence of comic strips. A definition is never helpful if it contains the words that a person is trying to define. That’s like saying a black box is a box that’s black. How helpful is that? But then again, a definition that is too cluttered such as the first one, can be more confusing than the actual object itself. It reminds me of the literary people trying to define Romanticism. To this day no one has been able to completely agree on an exact definition. The only two consistent things scholars agree on is that Romantic literature was written in the late eighteenth/ early nineteenth century and has something to do with nature or the freeing of feelings.

Now I haven’t read that many comics. In fact the experience and the extent of my knowledge falls into the space of our class with room to spare. So by no means am I going to state a definition that I believe is the correct one. I’m sure people that have been studying comics practically all their lives might know a little bit more about them than me. However, sometimes simple is better and looking at the beginning is the easiest place to start. So whatever a comic book was thought to be at the beginning is what it is and any deviations from that are different genres.

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