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Habibi: Islam, Cartoons And Love45:54
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Graphic novelist Craig Thompson of "Blankets" is out with a new, hard-edged Arabian-Nights love story "Habibi." We’ll talk Islam, cartoons, and love.

Sprawling across an epic landscape of deserts, harems, and modern industrial clutter, HABIBI tells the tale of Dodola and Zam, refugee child slaves bound to each other by chance, by circumstance, and by the love that grows between them. (habibibook.com)
Sprawling across an epic landscape of deserts, harems, and modern industrial clutter, HABIBI tells the tale of Dodola and Zam, refugee child slaves bound to each other by chance, by circumstance, and by the love that grows between them. (habibibook.com)

Wisconsin-raised Craig Thompson is a superstar in the graphic novel world.  His big hit “Blankets” went deep into growing up fundamentalist Christian.  Love, religion, and Wisconsin winters.  Now, Craig Thompson is taking on very different terrain.  Very different.

A mythical, dystopian Arabia.  Desert.  Harem.  Slave girl.  Arabian nights.  And the beautiful, flowing language of Islam. At the heart of it is still love and religion – or religious stories.  It’s bold for a cartoonist, a graphic novelist, to touch that realm with Islam.

This hour On Point:  Craig Thompson and his latest work “Habibi.”
-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Craig Thompson, Harvey and Eisner award-winning graphic novelist and author of Habibi.
Zareena Grawal, assistant professor, American Studies and Religious Studies, Yale University.

From Tom's Reading List

NPR "Thompson brings that mastery of the alchemical mixture of word and picture only possible on the comics page to the much-anticipated Habibi, set somewhere in a modern yet resolutely mythical Middle East."

Elle "Ink is to art as water is to life for graphic novelist Craig Thompson, whose new opus, Habibi (Pantheon), his first in seven years, stretches across ­ancient Middle Eastern geographies, religions, mythologies, and migrations—the whole imaginative sweep of Arab and Christian foundational ­histories—to tell the story of Dodola, a runaway child bride, and Zam, the orphan she rescues in the slave market where they first meet."

Mother Jones "At a staggering 672 pages, Habibi, Thompson's new book out this week, is a richly rendered love story set in a fictional Middle-East that's simultaneously modern and medieval. The author weaves the adventures of his slave-child protagonists with tales from the Bible and the Koran, numerology, and themes of imperial debauchery and environmental degradation."

Photos

( Thompson/Pantheon Books)
( Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)
(Thompson/Pantheon Books)

Playlist

Laytana (Live) by Trio Joubran
Andaloussian Dance by Bachir Bouayad

This program aired on September 29, 2011.

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