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Benecchi, Eleonora: "Cream Soda. The rhythm of everyday life." In: Image [&] Narrative 12.132–62, <http://www.imageandnarr ... article/viewFile/125/96> (5. Sept. 2011)
Added by: joachim (05 Sep 2011 01:59:06 Europe/Berlin)
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BibTeX citation key: Benecchi2011
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Keywords: "Cream Soda", Adachi. Mitsuru, Intermedialität, Japan, Manga, Semiotik
Collection: Image [&] Narrative
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In this work I will focus my attention on a specific manga, Cream Soda by Adachi Mitsuru (1996). As suggested by Eco (1999), I will analyze this single work keeping in mind that it belongs to a medium and some genre practiced through this medium, but focusing my attention on the specific syntax of the speech of Adachi. This means that in this work I won’t talk about manga in general or in itself, at least, not in the foreground and in the first instance, but I will consider Adachi’s specific execution of the art of manga. This work will start from the analysis of single panels, and their relationship with each other inside the page layout, following the critical path indicated by Thierry Groensteen (1999), and will be then accompanied by the analysis of images and texts contained inside those panels, with special regard to their relationship with each other and with images and texts contained in other panels, following the lead of Barbieri (1995) and Pellitteri (1998).
The analysis of the elements that this text brings together to create a coherent narrative, and those elements it will not, will show that to properly understand Adachi’s manga the reader must recognize the fictional nature of what he is reading and his function as co-author of the story. Obviously this reflection is based on a first level or narrative interpretation of the text because it is starting from this basic layer that all the other layers can be explored. This is also the reason why this work provides a punctual examination of the single panels.
The analysis here proposed will also demonstrate that, despite many panels open up to different levels of readings, the activation of the second or third level of reading is not a given. It will also become evident, though, that if one stops at a first level reading, the most obvious one, the text in question isn’t really fulfilled according to its author’s expectations: the reader’s high engagement with the text and how, as a result, he is able to better understand it, forms the heart of Adachi’s style and language.
Disseminating his work with clues, spoilers, symbolic objects and inside jokes, Adachi invites, in fact, his reader not only to re-read the text but also to read between the lines. As it will be demonstrated through this work, with his stylistic solutions and meta-narrative approach, Adachi often brings into question the art of manga and its specific language, and therefore I believe that the analysis of his peculiar execution of this art and language can represent a good starting off point for a more general discourse on the manga language.
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