Billy Ireland Museum Celebrates a Century of Women Cartoonists

You may notice how today, there’s a lot of Orwellian SJWs who intentionally obscure the past history of women writing and drawing comics, and act as though those they do take notice of are something entirely new. Well now, the Smithsonian magazine’s site announced the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Musuem at Ohio’s university has an exhibition set up for hosting a century’s worth of women in the art of cartooning:


Nina Allender saw herself as a painter. But after women’s rights activist Alice Paul visited her in 1913, she shifted focus, beginning a lengthy tenure as a cartoonist for the Congressional Union for Woman Suffrage’s flagship publication, The Suffragist. The painter-turned-cartoonist’s creations depicted suffragists as stylish young women patiently waiting for their rights—a portrayal starkly contrasted by anti-suffrage cartoons that caricatured activists as frumpy and nagging. Allender’s work was instrumental in building public support for the 19th Amendment, which banned voting discrimination on the basis of sex upon its ratification in August 1920.

To commemorate the centennial of this landmark event, Ohio State University’s Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum is hosting an exhibition titled “Ladies First: A Century of Women’s Innovations in Comics and Cartoon Art.” Per the museum’s website, the show draws on the experiences of the many female artists who have shaped the genre to trace its evolution from political cartoons to newspaper comic strips, underground “comix” and graphic novels.

“Part of our goal was to really look at how women were pushing comics and cartoon art forward, not just the fact that women made comics,” exhibition co-curator Rachel Miller tells Columbus Alive’s Joel Oliphint. “We wanted to think about, ‘What are the different ways in which this medium has benefited from women who are making comics?’

Something today’s PC pundits won’t take a serious look at, to recognize that there have been women in art, comics and otherwise, for over a century now. Not even how there have been black and Asian contributors, such as:


During the 1940s, Jackie Ormes became the first African-American woman cartoonist to have her work distributed nationally. She even licensed a line of upscale dolls modeled on Patty-Jo, one of the two African-American sisters featured in her “Patty-Jo ‘n’ Ginger” comic strip. […]


So even women of color specializing in comics and cartooning is nothing new at all. But most certainly is overlooked in a politically correct environment intent on undermining artistic merit. I know that cartoonists like Cathy Guisewite, Tarpe Mills and Lynn Johnston are cited in the exhibit, but I’d also like to know if writers like Laurie Sutton are included, recalling she’d written several Adam Strange tales in 1980-81, published as backups in Green Lantern at the time. IMO, writers of comics and cartoons should be highlighted too, since scripting bears significance just as much as artwork.

For now, this exhibit in Ohio is something PC advocates would do well to take a look at, and realize women working cartooning is nothing new at all, and recognize that the art form shouldn’t be monopolized by social justice identity politics.


Originally published here.

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Avi Green

Avi Green was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. He enjoyed reading comics when he was young, the first being Fantastic Four. He maintains a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy of facts. He considers himself a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. Follow him on his blog at Four Color Media Monitor or on Twitter at @avigreen1