October Surprise Political Cartoonista Wednesday
Graphic Journalist Susie Cagle
Susie Cagle has written and drawn for the Atlantic, the Guardian, Boston Review, Alternet, American Prospect, Truthout, Campus Progress, the Awl, the Hairpin, the Rumpus, Cartoon Movement, McSweeney’s, 7×7, the Bay Citizen, and many other fine publications. Her work has been featured in the Chicago Tribune, BoingBoing, Jezebel, Feministing, the Huffington Post and others, and she’s received honors from SPJ, the SF Bay Guardian and SF Weekly. She was formerly the weekly editorial cartoonist for the SF Appeal. Susie has a masters in journalism from Columbia, which still doesn’t offer a cartooning class.
She was arrested twice while covering Occupy Oakland, and was the first professional journalist to be arrested more than once while covering Occupy-related events.
Susie Cagle talking to SF Weekly about Occupy Oakland.
I’m kind of troubled when people say that I’m an artist. I think people think it’s nicer to call someone an artist than an illustrator or a cartoonist. I get that, but to my mind, it’s not quite as accurate, because I think “artist” implies that I’m taking liberties with what I’m doing. I really don’t think that I am. People really do think that anything that’s drawn or looks stylized is so subjective as to possibly be false. I find that disturbing.
People are saying over and over that I’m an editorial cartoonist, and I think that’s kind of the same thing. I usually don’t call myself a cartoonist at all. I usually say graphic journalist. I do journalism, but it’s in the form of drawings. I’m really pushing for that phrase to catch on. There are a lot of other people who do this stuff too. They’re legitimate. They have scruples and ethics, and it’s really important to all of us that what we draw be true. Oftentimes, when people call us an artist, it’s a little patronizing and not quite true. It belies a full understanding of what we’re trying to accomplish with our work.
At a time of such intense public scrutiny, the Oakland Police Department made the mistake of arresting a journalist, and sending her into the heart of an ugly process with which not only demonstrators but many other Oakland residents have long been familiar. They gave me an unmatched, visceral opportunity to understand what makes Oakland residents so angry with the police.Susie Cagle shares every gritty detail of her arrest at Occupy Oakland. It is not to be missed.
San Francisco’s local ABC news affiliate has interviewed Susie Cagle about her arrest. She has been charged with a misdemeanor of being “present at a raid” despite wearing a prominent press pass, and according to her father (also a cartoonist), the arresting officer was even familiar with her and her comics. Absolutely ridiculous.
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