Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Freedom of the Press in Black and White
Considering how often I've seen "Free Mumia" graffiti it's kind of strange that I had almost no idea who he was before I read this. Was I never curious? Did I never come across something discussing it? I guess not.
This is a (biased) account of Mumia Abu-Jamal live. It covers his early days as a young black man in America, his connections to the Black Panthers, his time as a journalist, the murder case he was involved with, and some of his time spent in prison afterwards.
If you read this account you will no doubt think that Mumia was set up, or wrongfully tried, or at least that the death penalty shouldn't exist. But that's what the comic is trying to convince you so of course you would think that. Is it true? I really cannot say, it seems as though something fishy was going on with the whole proceedings, but what exactly I don't know. I also feel that some seemingly important information I saw on the wikipedia page about the whole incident isn't included here. (Also, MOVE seems like some sort of cult.)
But enough about that, how good is the art? I think it looks pretty good. The artist has chosen to use a blocky style that at times looks like woodprints. It works well with the type of story being told (political propaganda) and the huuuuge amounts of text that are jammed into almost every panel.
Speaking of which, there are a few places where the text is a bit confusing and I read things out of order, but for the most part I knew when to read each piece of writing.
If you already know about Mumia this won't give you any information, but if you're as clueless as I was then it's a good starting point. Though as with all political propaganda it's probably worth reading some other sources too.