Comparing Stitches and Spinning

Assignment Details

  • Due: 11/20
  • Format: 1000 – 1250 words (4-5 pages), published as a page to your site.
  • Audience: You should assume an audience that has read Stitches and Spinning and thought about them, but who understands the books not quite as well as you do.
  • Tone: The style of your written reflection should be “academic casual.” I expect clear, coherent, grammatically correct prose that communicates clearly and directly. Show yourself to be a thoughtful, engaged person who is interested in explaining your ideas without need to “show off” or get overly bogged down in formality or jargon.
  • Sources: You are required to include quotes from Hillary Chute’s “Women, Comics, and the Risks of Representation” as well as from Stitches and Spinning. You are allowed to use other critical sources, but not expected to do so.
  • Images: Make certain you have at least one image on your page. You are free to include panels from Stitches and Spinning as evidence for assertions. Include captions for the images you use so that your reader is not confused about how they connect to your writing.
  • Organization: Comparison essays are often organized either in blocks (where you discuss the subjects you’re comparing one text at a time) or in a point by point (where you discuss your subjects together, one point of comparison at a time) manner. You should organize this essay using the latter method (in other words, each of your paragraphs should make a claim that applies to each of the two primary texts).
  • Thesis: This essay should include a clearly stated thesis statement. That thesis statement should be specific and arguable (in other words, it should take a position that others can logically have different perspectives on). “These two texts are similar but different” is definitely not a good thesis statement.


Write an essay in which you compare the arguments about trauma and recovery that David Small and Tillie Walden make in Stitches and Spinning respectively. Hillary Chute’s essay “Women, Comics, and the Risks of Representation” will provide a lens that focuses your discussion on this topic — she argues that comics artists deal with questions of trauma differently, and in many ways more powerfully, than other sorts of writers and artists. You won’t be able to grapple with all of the specific claims she makes, but you should think carefully about how her argument applies to these two books you are writing about, which might include pointing to ways in which her argument does not perfectly apply to Small and/or Walden and why.



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