Friday, May 30, 2014

Nast-y comics

Thomas Nast looms large in the universe of political cartoons.  He is responsible for the iconic red-and-white-themed branding of jolly old Santa Claus.  He is also responsible for the Republican elephant and the Democratic donkey.  He's arguably the father of modern editorial cartooning.  So it makes sense that he might have had some strong and controversial opinions. Unfortunately some of those opinions involved some thoroughly despicable attitudes towards the Irish and Catholics, often drawing them in sub-human tones. Here's an example which includes a map of what may be New York City?  Not entirely sure. But it's a a now it's here. Nast's virulently anti-Irish, anti-Catholic cartoons may seem a bit odd given his penchant for drawing pro-Chinese-immigrant and anti-Jim-Crow cartoons. Whatcha gonna do?

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