Unknown Soldier Gets Blogged Around the World

One thing the increased attention from the New York Times article has done for us is blow open the global internet. Where once we were spoken about almost exclusively on comic book websites and related blogs, now we are coming to the notice of a new kind of reader, one far more educated on the issues this book bats around with. Honestly, this was the scariest thing about the increased exposure. If anybody was going to call bullshit on what we’ve done here, it was going to be these people. But instead we were met with an overwhelmingly positive response. Here’s just a sampling of what some of our new audience is saying about us…

Ugandan Insomniac

She’s a Kampala woman who defines herself as…

“a  30-something journalist, writer and quack psychoanalyst (un)successfully pondering the complexities of herself, her people, her country and her world.”

Her review of Unknown Soldier is here. and includes such gems as…

Alberto Ponticelli’s art is moving.  For a native of Kampala, I felt his street scenes were a good depiction of the only life I know.

&

Ignorance of what exactly the war in Northern Uganda meant for millions who suffered under it is extremely high in the rest of this country.  For many people living south of the Karuma Falls, it was too far removed from their peaceful reality to comprehend.  Misunderstanding is highest among youth under 25 living outside of the affected region.  Many of them are unaware of the future repercussions of growing up with a generation of people that were subjected – and for the most part, abandoned to – a life at the brink of the abyss. It excites me that Unknown Soldier is that it will, perhaps, bring the story of the north to an entirely new generation.

Already I’m using her blog as a resource for future work on the book.

Africa Is A Country

Africa Is A Country is a phenomenal blog about African politics and the continent’s place in the world. I can’t recommend it more highly.

The bloggers  coverage of the New York Times article on Unknown Soldier is here.

CHRIS BLATTMAN

“An Assistant Professor of Political Science and Economics at Yale” who studies “poverty alleviation, political participation, the causes and consequences of violence, and public policy in developing countries.”

His blog is fantastic and he’s also given us one of our most prized reviews of Unknown Soldier.

My first reaction: This is patently absurd. Northern Uganda can simply not get any more kitsch. Second reaction: Better not jump to conclusions. To the comic book store. Third reaction: Whoa. This is simply outstanding.

and…

Tasteful. Thoughtful. Compelling. Gripping. Historically accurate (well, mostly–I mean this is a comic book). Writer Joshua Dysart has done leaps and bounds better then virtually every journalist (and a fair number of researchers) that I know.

Please support these bloggers! And if you know of any other blogs of this caliber and with similar concerns please don’t hesitate to post them in the comments section.

Posted on by Joshua Dysart Posted in Home, Press & Appearances, Unknown Soldier

10 Responses to Unknown Soldier Gets Blogged Around the World

  1. sandy

    sweet words wonderful to read you deserve all the love

  2. Ellen

    I have never purchased a comic before, so forgive my ignorance when I ask where I can get Unknown Soldier and how I can make sure I stay up to date on future issues of it.

  3. Rich

    This is all great to hear, pleased to see you and Alberto are getting the recognition you deserve.

    Did you know that the BBC are featuring you today? Here…

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/in_pictures/8221128.stm

    It features very prominently on the Entertainment page.

    Good work gents!

  4. Joshua Dysart

    @Ellen You can get the trade in any bookstore or online, though, wouldn’t you rather support your local comic book shop! They’re always owned by people in your community! Plus, that’s where you’ll have to go to keep following subsequent issues. you can go here http://www.comicshoplocator.com/ and type in your area code to get the location of a comic shop near you (please don’t let the images of crappy comics on that site fool you, there are good comics in the world, I promise). Also, I hope you get over your swine flu… yes, I went to your blog.

    @Rich I saw that! and I’ve been on BBC radio twice in the last week. We are loved across the pond!

  5. David

    Hey Joshua,
    i am a Ugandan and even though I have not yet read your work, I appreciate your efforts to enlighten this world of ours on both the beauties and the ills of Africa. Very often when i tell people where I am from, they ask me the silliest questions. How i learned English, if we cook our food etc. I like the fact that your work showcases the complex nature of the Ugandan culture but also shines a light on a very unnecessary war.
    God speed and i will definitely be buying the comics. Now if DC can only make a cartoon!

  6. Binney

    Look at this, it’s that movie on the LRA that you were talking about earlier.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/8226675.stm

    At the bottom they reference Unknown Soldier, except they messed it up and said it was launched last week. Unless the European launch date is different from the North American one, and even then they’re about a year behind.

    Also I’ve been wanting to ask you this for a while but whatever happened to your little editorials in the back of the comic? After the first story arc they just vanished and I’m hoping they’ll be back for the next arc. The backmatter was the best part because it was like the reality check in that reminded you that this isn’t stuff that happened in the past, or doesn’t happen now, but that it’s stuff that is still happening.

    I expected you to explode when Time broke that article on blood computers and how White House superstar Hillary Clinton’s arrival in Africa was a perfect example of the points you were making in the “Easy Kill” story arc. The war in Sudan is reported to officially be over, while war in Nigeria may be brewing. Now I know talking about every conflict in Africa today is an overwhelming task, maybe you can discuss issues like MNC’s exploiting labourers in the case of blood computers, women’s rights in Africa (an issue in Mali making headlines) or the continued investment in the African war-machine by governments, smugglers and terrorist organizations.

    I think it’s ridiculous that no one does anything or says anything until they get bored and walk into a movie theatre and watch a movie like Blood Diamond or Hotel Rwanda. That is bullshit. It’s bullshit because the reports on blood diamonds leaked years before the movie came out but no one gave a damn. You can walk down the street today grab a stranger and ask them about Rwanda, Apartheid, or King Leopold’s Belgium and they wouldn’t know. 1 million people were killed in a genocide 15 years ago and it took almost 10 years for that information to get integrated into our highschool curriculums.

    In the end, the most we can expect from everyone is to be informed. To know what is happening in the world and asking ourselves how we can change our lifestyles, even a little bit, to ease the suffering of the people who are less fortunate than us. If there is one great injustice in this world on our part, it’s that the flow of information is too slow to reach the general public.

    That’s why I loved the editorial in the back of Unknown Soldier. It was the information feed that could reach tens of thousands. Now with all the media coverage around the world you can’t hold back. You gotta keep up the good work because I’ve read what people are saying about Unknown Soldier and you ARE making a difference.

    Oh and bummer on that Eisner loss but what do those guys know eh?

    – Hailing from Toronto,
    Binney Sharma

  7. Combat Jack

    And here’s my review: http://daily-math.com/weblog/?p=1445

  8. Rich

    You are loved over here in England! Wrote about Unknown Soldier in April and it’s our classic trade for September at http://www.mombcomics.com

    Not the BBC or NY Times but hey, what do they know about comics ;o)

  9. Joshua Dysart

    Thanks for pimping, Rich!

  10. Brian Grindrod

    Hello Mr. Dysart,

    I used to post on the Violent Messiahs message board and even had one of my letters printed in an issue. Seems like a lifetime ago since I am now a 42 year old fart and father of a beautiful daughter.

    Just wanted to say that when I saw your name on the Unknown Soldier TPB, I decided t pick it up recalling how much I enjoyed VM. I knew this wasn’t going to be the classic take on the character but I sure as hell did not expect such a makeover. Look, I’ll be the first that I don’t know jack shit about the situation in Uganda except the stories that our school priest who hailed from there, Father David Kiyingi, told us when I attended Vincent Massey High School in 1984. His story of how he found his brother laying dead face first in the river just freaked the school out. Our knowledge of the world was smoking pot, Van Halen and blowjobs from the French Quebec chicks. Here comes Father David with his stories of death and mutilation.

    I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed the book and it made me grateful for living in a country like Canada. As a book collector and reader, it has convinced me to purchase the signed edition of ‘No Future Without Forgiveness’ by Archbishop Desmond Tutu by Easton Press.

    http://www.eastonpressbooks.com/leather/product.asp?code=2321

    Looking forward to the second volume and I wish you success!

    Best,
    – Brian Grindrod

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