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Tintin au pays du canard enchaîné: Hergé’s Hero re-invented in political cartoons of the 1950s and the 1960s

Screech, Matthew E. J. (2011) Tintin au pays du canard enchaîné: Hergé’s Hero re-invented in political cartoons of the 1950s and the 1960s. Belphégor: Littérature Populaire et Culture Médiatique, 10 (2). ISSN 1499-7185

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Abstract

"Tintin au Pays du Canard" discusses Tintin's role as a vehicle for satire in Le Canard enchainé. This newspaper, which combines humour with investigative journalism, frequently used the Francophone literary canon to satirise current events. I chart Tintin's entry into Le Canard, give his emergence a historical context and appraise his performance as a satirical instrument. The focus is on three hitherto neglected works: "Tintin à la recherche du Veau d'or" , a biblical/Faustian allegory, evokes the French IVth Republic endangered by the Algerian war (J. Lap, 1958). "Les Nouvelles Histoires de Tintin et Michou" portrays de Gaulle at his zenith with Tintin as the great leader (G. Macé and Grum, 1961). The four-part "Tintin-Michou" series copies Hergé's panels, puts them out of order and adapts them, in order to satirise the 1965 presidential elections and the Ben Barka affair (H. Escaro, 1965/6). Tintin's adventures in Le Canard document a rapidly receding era of French political history. Appropriation by Le Canard also places value on Hergé's hero: Tintin is accepted into a literary canon recognised by a politically aware adult readership.

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