Walking in the spirit of history : John Lewis' March, historical witnessing, and the resources of collective memory

    Item Description
    Linked Agent
    Advisor (adv): Bost, Matthew
    May 7, 2019
    Graduation Year

    This essay analyzes the comic book series March, written by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and illustrated by Nate Powell. Inspired by the Civil Rights Movement, the series portrays how Lewis became involved with the Civil Rights Movement, the difficulties he and others faced, and its relation to Barack Obama’s inauguration. March engages this history through opposing themes of non-violence and violence, humanity and dehumanization, the sacrifice of individuals as well as communities. I argue that through these themes, March acts as a witness to the sacrifice, violence, and deaths of men and women within the Civil Rights Movement to achieve moments of freedom like Barack Obama being elected as president. This witnessing allows future and past generations to validate the history of African Americans in the country and enact freedom, after understanding the purpose and context of the Civil Rights Movement. I use March as an example of how visual rhetoric can be utilized to remember history and witness to the present. Keywords: Civil Rights Movement, Spirit of History, Visual Rhetoric, sacrifice, non-violence and violence, and Golgotha

    Geographic Subject
    75 pages
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