Understanding Comics Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Who was the woodcut artist known for his silent "Woodcut Novels" of fables?

2. When McCloud refers to the word icon, to what is he referring?

3. What additional early examples of comics does the author mention but NOT cover?

4. Which of the following is an assumption that comics artists make about the reader?

5. What is the phenomenon of observing the parts but perceiving the whole?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe the author's first impressions of comics as a child.

2. How could an artist lengthen a pause in the conversation between two characters?

3. What is McCloud's notion of the Picture Plane?

4. What are the three most popular transitions in mainstream Western comics and why?

5. For what do Japanese mainstream comics use aspect-to-aspect transitions?

6. How is the Egyptian painting referenced in the book considered a comic?

7. Does McCloud think single panels should be considered comic art?

8. Is there a difference between an animated movie and comics?

9. How do words introduce time into a single frame?

10. What is McCloud's explanation for why the human mind has little difficulty converting shapes and images into faces?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

McCloud writes that when he was a child, he believed that the world ceased to exist unless he was present. As he grew older, he began filling in gaps with assumptions in order to get closure. What are strategies and evidence we use to convince ourselves of the existence of things we have not experienced first hand? To test these definitions, consider whether they would stand up to the question of whether extraterrestrial life exists.

Essay Topic 2

In aspect-to-aspect transitions, McCloud says that nothing "happens." Is presenting different aspects of a place important to storytelling? Why or why not? Do you think McCloud is accurate in saying that this kind of transition does not move the narrative along?

Essay Topic 3

McCloud notes that "We see ourselves in everything. We assign identities and emotions where none exist. And we make the world over in our image." Personification is a literary device that demonstrates McCloud's statement. Think of a time where you personified an inanimate object or abstract notion. What was it? What human attributes did you give to it?

(see the answer keys)

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