Friday, September 6, 2013
Post 1: A cartoon
This document is a cartoon published in the International Herald Tribune by the popular cartoonist Chapatte.
It is undated although we can guess it was issued in spring, since the Cannes festival usually takes place at that time of the year. Thanks to the speech bubble, we can say that the cartoon deals with the issue of piracy, a much-debated topic. Indeed, many disagree about the limits of piracy. Some believe it is an amazing technological progress that gives access to culture in all its forms (movies, songs, albums, books...) but others believe that it is a form of intellectual copyright infringement.
The young man, wearing the "@" t-shirt, with a speech bubble saying: "I love your movies. I've pirated them all!" is what catches the eye at first sight. He looks fairly young, so he could even be a teenager. Then we see a beautiful woman wearing a long dress, next to a man in black jacket and sunglasses who is signing an autograph for the teenager. We can assume that he is a film director. In the top left corner there is a sign indicating that it is the Cannes film festival. Finally, different fans and photographers are depicted in the background.
But what does the author wish to convey with this cartoon? Indeed, he is suggesting that the limits of piracy are fading, and therefore we don't know where piracy stops being a wonder of technology and starts being a crime. While posing this problem, the author also tackles with a very persistent issue: the exaggerated fanaticism of our society towards the show world in general (actors and singers aswell as directors). This is stated by the different fans screaming in the background, more precisely in the right side. Chapatte satirizes this world, which he finds ridiculous. His aim is therefore to raise the readers awareness about the piracy issue.
On the whole, the message put across by the author is that times are changing and that we should ask ourselves where the limits are. To what extent should piracy be legal? Is the fan's attitude being completely over the top and even sickly? Undoubtedly, the author has carefully thought-out the cartoon, leaving the readers small "clues" to influence them.
In my opinion, the cartoon is pretty effective and especially easy to understand. It is a way for the author to convey the message to an even larger group of readers. Because of its simplicity, the cartoon doesn't develop much the subject of piracy, so it leaves that task to the reader and public in general. Chapatte wants us to think by ourselves, and have our own opinion. I personally believe that the cartoon is definitely clever enough to influence the readers.
Finally, the situation illustrated by the cartoon reminds me of the film footage there is of, for example, The Beatles' concerts: huge cheering crowds of young teenagers, screeching and running at the sight of their idols. Undeniably, this scene is very likely to take place anywhere developed in the world, where the masses live in a fake world, filled with the lives of others, the lives of their idols, which might end up being more important than the own individual's life.