Frederick Luis Aldama


On his book Your Brain on Latino Comics: From Gus Arriola to Los Bros Hernandez

Cover Interview of June 10, 2009

The wide angle

Part of developing our taste for certain comic books—and the same applies for novels, music, art, films, and the like—is our refining of our aesthetic sensibility.  This typically happens at an early age.  In the case of comic books, this is partly so because, for those like myself, and in terms of pocket money, it is much more possible to buy a comic than to buy a novel or to pay to see a film.  The implications are, however, foundational.  It is our developing of aesthetic faculty, our “growing,” that leads us to discriminate between likes and dislikes in all aspects of everyday life and in all age groups.

In Your Brain on Latino Comics I’m particularly interested in questions such as why author/artists do know that a bold faced word is louder than a non bold-faced word.  Why do we imagine movement in the spaces (gutters) between the comics as well as within the panels proper?  Why do we each have our own tastes in terms of certain styles of writing and drawing?

The book turns to advances in the brain sciences to give more formal expression to development of a taste faculty, as expressed in the likes and dislikes of Latino comic books, and also to a deeper understanding of what we do, and how we imagine, when consuming them.