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Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros. Article (PDF Available) in Journal of Pragmatics 43(3) · February with Reads. Size Report. DOWNLOAD PDF Tintin and The Picaros (The Adventures of Tintin 23) · Read more Adventures of Tintin in the Land of the Soviets (Herge). The following is a preprint version of a paper that has been published as: Forceville, Charles (). “Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros.” Journal of.

This is a fundamental question. If runes should be partly motivated signs, what is it then that motivates them? The embodied cognition view entails that humans are able to conceptualize abstract phenomena — and thereby to make sense of their lives — thanks to their visual, aural, tactile, olfactory, and gustatory access to the world 32 Forceville: Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros and thanks to their ability to move in certain ways typically: forward, and along the horizontal plane. They are therefore good candidates for exploring the CMT claims about embodied cognition.

Conversely, since CMT presents a plausible model to explain how abstract phenomena are conceptualized — namely via embodied cognition — it is worth pursuing how pictorial runes could be understood as visual expressions of this model.

I will thus offer some speculations about possible embodied motivations of each of the runes identified in Picaros.

CMT critics could then think of rival i. Speed and movement lines. Kennedy suggests that speed lines are rooted in everyday experiences: vehicles leave tracks on muddy surfaces; vehicles and people moving past us make us feel air currents, or cause trails of dust see also McCloud, We could see the twirl as resembling a miniature tornado, or a small spring — both strongly associated with exerting physical pressure.

In fact, in panel But this may be too far-fetched an attempt to ground it realistically. However, it is interesting that the twirl is used not just to indicate literal movement, but also confusion, dizziness, or drunkenness. This 34 Forceville: Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros phenomenon is by no means restricted to Picaros cf. Albert, Spiky lines.

However, perhaps they have, in this function, developed from the droplets rune. As salience marker a possible motivation could be the sparkling of shiny things. As accompaniment of negative emotions, I cannot think of any plausible reason.

How precise and universal this language is can only be assessed after more applications of the blueprint model presented here. I hope that the analyses have demonstrated that not only comics scholars, but also theorists of visual metaphor and metonymy may benefit from the systematic examination of pictorial runes. Moreover, cognitivists in various disciplines should find the phenomenon of runes pertinent to their concerns. Finally, one of the big challenges facing information technologists is to develop computer programs that can identify and retrieve relevant visual information from pictures on internet.

Inasmuch as pictorial runes constitute one of the most patterned dimensions in the comics medium, this may be a fruitful avenue to pursue. At least some runes have quite specific forms, locations, and orientations, and appear to be associated with specific terminology deployed here in Forceville , I prefer to retain my original labels to avoid inconsistency and confusion. Haloed droplets appear to be a clear indication of strong emotion. Haloed spirals are associated with negative emotions, specifically anger, but by extension with negativity in a more general sense.

But such goals can only be fruitfully pursued after the present model has been further calibrated in many more cases studies. Historical research is necessary here, too. In addition, the degree to which the runes identified have a stable meaning must be investigated in empirical research see Ojha and Forceville, in preparation. It is hoped that the present paper helps launch further research into these various directions.

Both their critical comments and their encouragement have helped improve the quality of this paper. The responsibility for any errors and misinterpretations resides, of course, entirely with me. Le Mouvement. Bal, Mieke, Narratology, 3rd ed. Toronto University Press, Toronto. Bordwell, David, Thompson, Kristin, Film Art: An Introduction, 5th ed.

McGraw-Hill, Boston etc. Cohn, Neil, A visual lexicon. Public Journal of Semiotics 1, Anger in Asterix: The metaphorical representation of anger in comics and animated films. Engelhardt, Yuri, Forceville, Charles, Journal of Pragmatics 37, 69— Non-verbal and multimodal metaphor in a cognitivist framework: Agendas for research. Metaphor in pictures and multimodal representations.

In: Gibbs, Raymond W. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. Metonymy in visual and audiovisual discourse. In: Moya-Guijarro, A. Balloonics: The visuals of balloons in comics. McFarland, Jefferson, NC. Multimodal Metaphor. Gibbs, Raymond W. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. Embodiment and Cognitive Science. The Cambridge Handbook of Metaphor and Thought.

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Gasca, Luis, Gubern, Roman, []. El Discurso del Comic.

Catedra, Madrid. Haser, Verena, Johnson, Mark, University of Chicago Press, Chicago. Jossey-Bass, San Francisco. Kennedy, John, Metaphor in pictures. Perception 11, Koller, Veronika, Brand images: Multimodal metaphor in corporate branding messages. Metaphors of Anger, Pride, and Love. Metaphor in Culture: Universality and Variation.

Metaphor: A Practical Introduction, 2nd ed. Oxford University Press, Oxford. Lakoff, George, The contemporary theory of metaphor. In: Ortony, Andrew Ed. Lakoff, George, Johnson, Mark, Metaphors We Live By.

Basic Books, New York. McCloud, Scott, Understanding Comics. Paradox, New York. Harper, New York. Murphy, Gregory L.

On metaphoric representation. Cognition 60, Ojha, Amitash, Charles Forceville in prep. How stable is the meaning of pictorial runes? Casterman, Tournai. Saraceni, Mario, The Language of Comics. Shinohara, Kazuo, Matsunaka Yoshihiro, Pictorial metaphors of emotion in Japanese comics. Sweetser, Eve E. Tan, Ed S. The telling face in comic strip and graphic novel. In: Baetens, Jan Ed.

University Press Leuven, Leuven, pp. Alcazar realises that the Picaros will not be able to launch a successful coup against Tapioca while they remain drunkards owing to frequent parachute drops of whisky from Tapioca's forces , and to combat this problem Calculus provides them with tablets which render the taste of alcohol disgusting and which he has been secretly testing on Haddock, Tintin, Ridgewell and the Arumbayas in the course of the story.

Soon afterward, Jolyon Wagg and his troupe of carnival performers, the "Jolly Follies", arrive at the camp, having lost their way to Tapiocapolis where they mean to take part in the carnival.

At Tintin's suggestion, the Picaros disguise themselves in the Follies' costumes and enter Tapiocapolis during the carnival. There, they storm the presidential palace and seize control; Alcazar becomes president, with Tapioca and Sponsz being exiled to Borduria. Thomson and Thompson are rescued from a firing squad , while Castafiore and her assistants are released from prison. In a stroke of political commentary, the upheaval of the government has caused virtually no change to the slum or the lives of its inhabitants.

Background[ edit ] "It's the atmosphere that has inspired me: everything happening in South America. Brazil and torture, the Tupamaros, Fidel Castro, Che. Without even saying where my sympathies lie I obviously sympathize with Che Guevara, but at the same time I know terrible things are happening in Cuba.

Nothing is black or white! Finally, it seems that sometimes the spirals in Picaros convey a specific point of view. Note, however, that an alternative interpretation is available: Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros deceiving Tapioca.

To what extent other runes are used in this way remains to be attested. A twirl resembles a spiral, but is visually distinguishable from it by being broader, and by having at least one open loop. There are two primary locations for a twirl: In the first case it signals movement, and an indication of the direction from which the agent has come — similar to speed lines; in the second case it signals dizziness, drunkenness, confusion, or unconsciousness.

Two twirls, one indicating dizziness, the other movement and direction, Tintin et les Picaros, panel As for the movement twirl, behind walking and running persons or animals it always occurs singly, whereas behind moving vehicles sometimes more than one twirl is used. The dizziness twirl is found as a multiple of three or more in four panels Special cases. By far the majority of the runes found in Picaros are accounted for by the categories presented above.

However, some runes do not, for various reasons, unambiguously fit into these categories. Panel 2. Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros be connoted, not the actual foul smell — for it turns out there is nothing wrong with the whiskey see 2.

As suggested above, this suggests the possibility that runes may convey a subjective point of view.

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A more difficult case is the pair of identical flourishes appearing in Are these runes conveying the heat of the dish? Its smell? Irregular bulbous rune, Tintin et les Picaros, panel Shiny floors in posh buildings invariably feature small vertical lines under the objects standing on these floors.

Presumably, the lines reflect those objects. By no means all floors have them.

Besides characterizing windows and floors, reflection lines also typify other objects: Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros besides runes to indicate mirroring: Runic type Subtype Total number of Percentage of occurrences in panels in which Picaros panels rune occurs Speed lines Rune frequencies in Tintin and the Picaros. For example, if in a panel 12 speed lines appear behind three running characters, this was scored as three in the speed line category; if two of the characters in addition featured 7 movement lines in all, this led to a score of two in the movement line category.

Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros 3. Methodological considerations in the study of runes A minimal requirement for the model outlined in this paper to make any sense is that the majority of the runes can be unambiguously classified in a category. That is, each instance must be recognizable as one rune rather than as another. Inasmuch as runes constitute a rudimentary language, certain flourishes must all be recognizable as, say, twirls, and different from the spiral this is akin to the Saussurian distinction between the system of langue and its manifestations in parole.

That is, for the cataloguing procedure to work at least reasonably well, runes must have a prototypical or idealized manifestation. Since I hope that the model presented in this paper will inspire other scholars to undertake new case studies pertaining to other Tintin albums, other oeuvres, other styles, other periods, other geographical locations , it will be necessary to expand briefly on some premises I adopted and methodological problems I encountered in the process of cataloguing runes in this particular album.

Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros The following issues deserve consideration: Let me briefly expand on each of these issues. Rune or literal depiction? My decision to opt, in a given case, for a runic interpretation rather than a literal one has been primarily motivated by the assessment whether laws of gravity for the droplets were defied if yes: The status of other flourishes sometimes also poses problems. Are these literal or runic lines? A third problematic case is backgrounds.

Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros Form. From table 1 we can gauge that some runes, such as the twirl, the droplet, the spike, and the spiral, have specific forms, which are not easily confused. Speed and movement lines, by contrast, can take a variety of forms, partly because they may enhance non-linear, erratic paths of motion.

Decontextualized form alone is insufficient to distinguish between the two; orientation and location need to be taken into account to comprehend their meaning.

Similarly, while the twirl and the spiral are usually clearly distinct, sometimes a twirl may have no open loops and so appear identical to a spiral. In such cases, the analyst has to make a choice on the basis of narrative plausibility. But note that there is inevitably a degree of circularity here: The same problem presents itself when one of the halo-multiples spirals, spikes, droplets occurs around the head of a character that is relatively far away.

The result is that these runes look the same e.

The analyst should always consider the possibility that a new rune sub category needs to be designed, or alternatively, that an artist has added a fuzzy flourish to add some general dynamism rather than wishing to convey a precise meaning. Location and orientation. Even when form, location and orientation are unambiguous, the meaning of a rune cannot always be given uncontroversially.

Although I propose subclasses for several runes, objective categorization is sometimes impossible. Single or multiple?

Of the runes in Picaros, only the twirl typically occurs on it own; the others typically appear as multiples consisting of two or more graphic signs.

But there is no reason why other artists may not vary on this. Runes in combination with other information. Similarly, movement twirls can be combined with movement lines.

Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros 4. Instances of pictorial runes in other comics As indicated, the fact that only a single album has been investigated considerably limits the degree to which generalizations can be made. Spirals, spikes, literal droplets, movement Fig.

There are spikes or are they anxiety-runic-droplets-seen-from-a-distance? Morris uses this halo-combination to convey various types of emotion in the album, but he also combines droplets and spirals to convey specifically anger e. Movement lines, Fig. Movement lines and spikes left ; movement droplets, and twirl. Soirs de lines and spirals right. Soirs de Paris: But runes also occur in less main-stream comics.

The magician has let a woman float in the air, having only her head rest on a chair. Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros combination with the hand posture may be an attempt to mimic what he has just seen. Two contiguous panels fig. The former reinforce our interpretation that the man fondles the woman, while the latter indicate that she is startled by this. In panel 3. Spirals in Le Combat Ordinaire, Fig. Twirls in Le Combat Ordinaire, vol.

I Larcenet , panel A few panels later he is literally or hallucinatorily lost in a wood, the two twirls above his head communicating his confused state of mind fig. Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros In Mister O, Lewis Trondheim manages to present 30 variations of the story of Mister O trying to cross a ravine — and inevitably failing. Each story covers a single page, which contains 60 10 rows of 6 postage stamp-format pictures.

Text balloons are very rare 19 balloons in panels , and only contain pictures, pictograms, numbers, and mathematical symbols. The twirl in panel 5. In panel 5. Panel 5. Whether these latter are to be interpreted as sonic spikes, attention-drawing spikes, or none of these is a matter for debate. Alternatively, they could also be understood as droplets-seen-from-a-distance. I note in passing that the few depicted droplets in this album are invariably sweat-beads — although in gravity- defying halo-form, e.

Movement twirl in Fig. Spirals in Mister O Fig. The phenomenon of pictorial runes evokes the intriguing question whether they are to be considered completely arbitrary signs that only through endless reuse by different artists have become conventionalized, or whether their meaning is, or at least at one time was, somehow motivated, in the sense that there is a reason why runes look the way they do.

This is a fundamental question. If runes should be partly motivated signs, what is it then that motivates them? Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros and thanks to their ability to move in certain ways typically: They are therefore good candidates for exploring the CMT claims about embodied cognition. Conversely, since CMT presents a plausible model to explain how abstract phenomena are conceptualized — namely via embodied cognition — it is worth pursuing how pictorial runes could be understood as visual expressions of this model.

I will thus offer some speculations about possible embodied motivations of each of the runes identified in Picaros. CMT critics could then think of rival i. Speed and movement lines. Kennedy Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros symptoms of literal heat, and also as accompaniment of certain emotions, such as profound embarrassment, anger, and fear.

In the transition from literal to figurative use, two mechanisms seem to play a role: We could see the twirl as resembling a miniature tornado, or a small spring — both strongly associated with exerting physical pressure. In fact, in panel But this may be too far-fetched an attempt to ground it realistically.

However, it is interesting that the twirl is used not just to indicate literal movement, but also confusion, dizziness, or drunkenness. Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros phenomenon is by no means restricted to Picaros cf. Albert, Spiky lines.

However, perhaps they have, in this function, developed from the droplets rune. As salience marker a possible motivation could be the sparkling of shiny things. As accompaniment of negative emotions, I cannot think of any plausible reason. Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros 6.

Tintin - Tintin and the Picaros [Pheonix User Collection].pdf

How precise and universal this language is can only be assessed after more applications of the blueprint model presented here. I hope that the analyses have demonstrated that not only comics scholars, but also theorists of visual metaphor and metonymy may benefit from the systematic examination of pictorial runes.

Moreover, cognitivists in various disciplines should find the phenomenon of runes pertinent to their concerns. Finally, one of the big challenges facing information technologists is to develop computer programs that can identify and retrieve relevant visual information from pictures on internet.

The Adventures of Tintin Tintin And The Picaros Rastapopoulos

Inasmuch as pictorial runes constitute one of the most patterned dimensions in the comics medium, this may be a fruitful avenue to pursue. At least some runes have quite specific forms, locations, and orientations, and appear to be associated with specific terminology deployed here in Forceville , I prefer to retain my original labels to avoid inconsistency and confusion. Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros events and situations movement, emotion, drawing-attention , which would seem to make them interesting candidates for computerizable search variables.

Haloed droplets appear to be a clear indication of strong emotion. Haloed spirals are associated with negative emotions, specifically anger, but by extension with negativity in a more general sense. But such goals can only be fruitfully pursued after the present model has been further calibrated in many more cases studies.Pictorial runes in Tintin and the Picaros surrounded by these lines, and in panel In: Moya-Guijarro, A.

The first is Sometimes, it is difficult to tell the sound-enhancing and attention- enhancing types apart. I Larcenet , panel It is important to note that the movement is not only repetitive but also involuntary, unlike the situation in movement lines. Thomson and Thompson are rescued from a firing squad , while Castafiore and her assistants are released from prison.

A somewhat similar situation occurs in

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