The Graphic Canon

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The Graphic Canon: The World's Great Literature as Comics and Visuals (Seven Stories Press) is a three-volume anthology, edited by Russ Kick, that renders some of the world's greatest and most famous literature into graphic-novel form.[1] The first two volumes were released in 2012, and the concluding volume was published in spring 2013.


NPR declared: "It's easily the most ambitious and successfully realized literary project in recent memory, and certainly the one that's most relevant for today's readers."[2] In a full-page review, The New York Times Sunday Book Review concluded: "What [editor Russ Kick] asks us to acknowledge with The Graphic Canon is this: Gulliver’s Travels, Wuthering Heights, Leaves of Grass — these works of literature do not reside just on the shelves of academia; they flourish in the eye of our imagination.”[3] The following week, it was named an "Editors' Choice" in the NY Times Sunday Book Review.[4]

Publishers Weekly called it "a must-have anthology,"[5] Library Journal said it's "an exciting new benchmark for comics,"[6] Booklist dubbed it "a uniquely powerful piece of art,"[7] and School Library Journal declared it "startlingly brilliant" and "a masterpiece of literary choices as well as art and interpretation."[8]

The Graphic Canon, Volume 1[edit]

Volume 1: From the Epic of Gilgamesh to Shakespeare to Dangerous Liaisons, published May 2012, features 55 classic works of literature, going from the earliest, ancient literature until the end of the 1700s.[9] Some of the artists include Robert Crumb, Will Eisner, Molly Crabapple, Rick Geary, and Seymour Chwast.

Featured works[edit]

The Graphic Canon, Volume 2[edit]

Volume 2: From "Kubla Khan" to the Brontë Sisters to The Picture of Dorian Gray, published October 2012, continues chronologically by featuring 51 of the great, classic works of the 19th century. A few of the artists include Maxon Crumb, Gris Grimly, Hunt Emerson, John Porcellino, John Coulthart, Dame Darcy, S. Clay Wilson, and Seth Tobocman.[10]

Featured works[edit]

The Graphic Canon, Volume 3[edit]

Volume 3: From Heart of Darkness to Hemingway to Infinite Jest (March 2013) begins with three great works from 1899 and continues with 77 works from the twentieth century, ending in 1996. Featured artists include Robert Crumb, Dame Darcy, Ted Rall, Milton Knight, and Tara Seibel, among many others.[11]

Featured works[edit]


  1. ^ Reid, Calvin (2012-02-03). "Graphic Canon: Comics Meet the Classics". Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  2. ^ Attenberg, Jami. "Indie Booksellers Pick The Year's Best Books". NPR. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  3. ^ Annie Weatherwax. "Graphic Lit 'The Graphic Canon,' Edited by Russ Kick". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  4. ^ "Sunday Book Review : Editors Choice". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  5. ^ "Comics Review: The Graphic Canon, Vol. 2 by Edited by Russ Kick". 2012-09-28. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  6. ^ "Graphic Novels Prepub Alert: Guy Delisle, Alison Bechdel & The Graphic Canon". 2012-01-16. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  7. ^ "Booklist calls The Graphic Canon "a uniquely powerful piece of art" |". 2012-03-16. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  8. ^ "All Diamond, No Rough — @AngeReads and @droogmark Adult Books 4 Teens". 2012-05-16. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  9. ^ "Books | Seven Stories Press". Retrieved 2017-03-29.
  10. ^ "Books | Seven Stories Press". Retrieved 2017-03-29.
  11. ^ "Books | Seven Stories Press". Retrieved 2017-03-29.

External links[edit]