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Comics from the Middle East region are a valuable teaching tool for university classrooms in the United States. In the last 10 years, comics and graphic novels, long-form comic-based narratives, produced by artists from around the region have grown in use as teaching materials in some of the world's best universities. Wildly creative, countercultural and outside of traditional editorial control, comic artists and graphic novelists are leading a new way for Americans to learn about the Middle East.In 1980, Jad Khoury published his groundbreaking long-form comic masterpiece "Carvinal". As important as these artists were to the development of comics, they are only a few examples of the rich history of cartooning in the region. A new generation of comic artists in the Middle East is expanding from comic strip creators such as Farzat, Ali and Kahil. Often self-formed into collectives these artists are working outside of established newspapers that print regular comic strips. Working with the publisher of "Muqtatafat," Ninth Art Press, all of the profits from the first print run of the book went to support the legal damages assessed to Samandal. While we wish we could do more, we hope this small gesture will help the artists in that collective to support and develop comics.
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