Events & Seminars

Photoshopping History: A Holistic Approach to “Scanlating” Old Pictorial Magazines


This paper offers a holistic reading of a single issue of the Chinese pictorial magazine Shanghai Sketch (Shanghai manhua, 1928-1930), with particular attention to the process of “scanlation.” In this case, scanlation refers to translating the Chinese text into English, and then digitally transferring the English translation in place of the Chinese while maintaining, as much as possible, the layout of the original magazine. As I will show, the process of digital editing (Photoshopping) involved in producing the scanlation reveals a range of inter-connected concerns touching on aesthetics, historicity, narrativity, and even gender politics, all embedded in the materiality and intermediality of the illustrated entertainment magazine. The paper as a whole suggests reconsidering how such image-text print artifacts can be read as sources for research and for teaching, while also raising the question of how scanlations of this sort are best published.

Professor John A. CRESPI (江克平教授)
Henry R. Luce Associate Professor of Chinese Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures Colgate University
December 4, 2017 (Monday)
Room 3301, Academic Building (Lifts no. 17 - 18)