Today’s post is about a GIF in which Hillary Clinton looks around at balloons dropping from the ceiling, and dramatically mouths “WOW” during the 2016 Democratic National Convention. It’s a quick clip that went viral in no time.
Today I want to talk about one of the inspirations for this blog: Richard Nixon. Nixon had a variety of cartoonists drawing him in a variety of different ways, but the one I want to focus on today is Herblock’s “sewer cartoon.”
The 2016 was a goldmine of political memes — in part because of the growing technology, but also in part because of the wide array of candidates. The 2016 race began with twenty-two Republican candidates. Twenty-two candidates. In one party. With twenty-two candidates in one party, there’s sure to be a bit of mayhem and meme-ing. Ted Cruz is the perfect example.
Today’s post will take us back a century to the United States’ entry into World War I. The cartoon for this post, titled “At Last a Perfect Soldier,” was drawn by Robert Minor in 1916, about a year before the United States officially declared war on Germany. And that’s where our story begins.
Today I want to break down the steps that I take to understand a political cartoon. Analyzing any primary source is a tough task to tackle, but political cartoons are a unique challenge because they are a visual medium. Because of that, they can be harder to contextualize in history.
In the 2008 presidential election, Republican nominee John McCain chose Alaskan governor Sarah Palin as his running mate. In the same year, the TV show Saturday Night Live chose comedian Tina Fey to represent Sarah Palin in spoofs and parodies. Hilarity ensued. One of the more memorable quotes from the 2008 election was Sarah Palin’s enthusiastic line, “I can see Russia from my house!” That, however, was actually Tina Fey’s line. Sarah Palin never said that.
It would be almost unfair to create a political cartoon blog without talking about what is widely considered to be the first American political cartoon: Ben Franklin’s “Join or Die.”