Political cartoonists as the guerrillas of the news media

Cartooning offers a very illuminating window on censorship, and so my intent with the symposium, as it will be with the book, was to find a stimulating range of cases that illustrates the various kinds of pressure that cartooning faces around the world. Within the media sector, cartoonists have been neglected more than other media professionals, more than writers. It’s more likely that we would know of reporters in trouble than cartoonists in trouble. The reporters probably work in brand-name news organizations – with lawyers on retainer. But most cartoonists are freelancers. It’s the other side of the coin of the simplicity of their work. What makes satirical cartooning such a potentially radical and powerful medium, and a centuries-old art form, is that you don’t need much to do it. Just a piece of paper or a wall and something to scratch it with. You don’t need a lot of capital or an organization behind you. That makes cartoonists the guerrillas of the media — but it also makes them more vulnerable.

– Cherian George. Interview with the Center for Media at Risk. For the full interview, go here.