Thursday, December 1, 2011

Celebrating African American Women in the Comics

Head over to the Madame Noire blog for some fun facts about the Ormes Society, named for Jackie Ormes, the first black woman cartoonist. There are quite a few talented sistahs drawing comics these days, and the Ormes Society promotes their work, and the inclusion of women of color as characters and creators in the comics industry.

I'd never heard of Ormes until recently. She drew and illustrated comics and editorial cartoons for African American newspapers in the 1930s-60s, using her pen to fight for black civil rights. Her beloved character Torchy Brown, who debuted as a Harlem teenager in 1937 in the series "From Dixie to Harlem" embodied the struggles and accomplishments of the Great Migration, while the wise cracking Patty Jo and Ginger commented slyly on the racial struggles of the Cold War era.You can learn more about Ormes and her creations on the Jackie Ormes website, or in this richly illustrated biography.

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