Quick Click: Oct. 30, 2014
William Eisner (1917-2005) was a Jewish American cartoonist internationally recognized as one of the giants in the field of sequential art. During Eisner’s early career, he contributed to WOW, What a Magazine! and started his buccaneering saga entitled Hawk of the Seas. His popularity and recognition rose sharply with the debut of his character The Spirit on June 2, 1940, which continued until Oct. 5, 1952.
From the mid-1940s to the early 1970s, Eisner experimented with other applications for his work. “Comics can be a very valuable teaching tool,” Eisner said.
He found commercial applications for them and started producing training brochures for General Motors, U.S. Steel and the Department of Defense. In 1977, Eisner’s A Contract With Go was one of the first graphic novels to deal with serious adult themes on a mature level. In 1980, he wrote, Comics and Sequential Art, which is still used by art schools and in university film classes today.
In 2002, Eisner received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Federation for Jewish Culture.
Want to learn more? Go to the DJN Foundation archives, available for free at www.djnfoundation.org.
By Adam Mosseri, Detroit Jewish News Foundation Fellow