Friday, September 1, 2017

Mafalda Short Essay

10 Years with Mafalda
(8/31/2017) --- It's been ten years since I had the chance to put my hands in a Mafalda (1) book, better say to see it in person.  To give a brief idea of who is Mafalda and what is her universe? It's the comic strip of an Argentinian girl who was created by Quino (2) in 1964. We need to understand that Mafalda started as an advertisement oriented cartoon and it evolved to be a product of is time.

Beyond the socio-political setting of the 1960's in which each character represents different ideological aspects of the Argentinian culture, the setting can be still applied in the contemporary of today's social panorama in which the rise of populist and neo-nazi parties are creating an urgency in which a new voice such as Quino and thus Mafalda need to be hear. 

Of course we have Doonesbury (3) but over the years Gary Trudeau (4) has lowered the pace of the strip because of age and other commitments, leaving an opening for young cartoonists who have this disposition of media beyond any printed means to reach their desired targeted audience.

What I found interesting, is that Mafalda never struck openly in the United States; it could be due sociological differences; humor disparity or the way the people see society's evolution and how international and regional relations evolve on a daily basis. It is important to have some form of political humor and critique that can reach to the people of every country and make them think about how to change and impact their communities.

On the United States a cartoon as Mafalda is just scarce, there aren't many on mainstream media besides Doonesbury and is actually quite sad, because there aren't any new voices that can impact the readers; I guess, there is always online media and hosting, albeit is difficult to reach an audience without the proper funds.

I haven't found any official translations about Mafalda at least in Tampa, I know online there are some unofficial's, but nothing in particular. Why we need a character as Mafalda? Or at least to read it beyond the language and cultural barriers, because it expose a strong female character who is non-conformist with the rules of the society that she is growing up.

We as readers, we need to understand that the comics expose a great deal of feminist and existentialist tones that transcend the bounds of 1960's in Argentina; it sets a series of examples that we can be whatever who we want to be and hesitate and question our surroundings. It gives an amazing introduction to younger readers about what is to be a female and to try to expose your ideas as openly as possible; knowing that within gender bias there would be a difficulty to expose your ideas.

On an existentialist level, Mafalda is just a prime example towards how the following a retrospective and exo analyses could lead to see solutions on a problematic social enviroment, but also to understand the part of yourself that makes it your own persona; the idea of an existential doubt shouldn't be seen as a bad "thing" as is part of a composed ego and well structured critical thinking.


Reference:

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mafalda
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quino
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doonesbury
  4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garry_Trudeau

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