Essay Sample on Political Editorial Cartoons

Published: 2019-05-23
Essay Sample on Political Editorial Cartoons
Categories:  Political science Art
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 846 words
8 min read

Symbolism and Art are the most silent and sarcastic ways that the journalists use to criticize the failure of different people in their jobs. In the magazines and newspapers, they are normally cartoons that are drawn which, when well analyzed, the true internal meaning comes out. Such are usually drawn to the current affairs. A good example where political editorial cartoons and art were used to express such concerns to the government was when there were one of the largest marine oil accidents. This caused eleven deaths. There were various cartoon images that were edited to express varied messages to the government and the citizens. This study looks into one of the cartoon images which comparing it with the other. The first cartoon is by Graeme MacKay. This was about a picture showing the president who is seated in his oval office reluctantly gearing at the oil puddle that is flowing slowly into his desk. The other image is by Jeff Thompson, which was also published in the same period. It shows a man who seems to be in a traffic and the process, he is listening to the radio. He becomes angered by the responsible people which cause the whole scenario. According to the analysis, the best-presented information in the form of symbolism is the image by Graeme MacKay as discussed in the study below.

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The first cartoon symbolizing the president of the nation with weird body shape from his fingers to ears and facial expression. The artist expresses all this body feature showing the president to be thin and weak in a manner symbolizes the true nature and feeling the president felt about the occurrence. Here, Graeme MacKay wanted to express how the president is weak politically and through the facial expression, he was showing a disgusted face. Meaning that this issue was a headache for him. The fact that the door is closed and oil creeps under the door shows that all the other parts are affected by this except the presidents region. He is, therefore, reluctant to react as he does not feel the force yet. This is used in the image to symbolize how the politicians are unwilling to respond to the needs of the citizens as they are not affected strongly or are not affected at all. The closed door means that the government is isolated from the problem and does not get the effect as they are protected. The expression of the president looking at the oil that is coming in shows how slow he is to respond to it. This symbolizes the response of the government to such issues (AJ Mills, K Robson, LF Pitt, 181-190).

The other editorial political cartoon is by Jeff Thompson, which was also published in the same year but in different magazines. This is also showing the expression of the reactions of this scenario, resulting from the spillage. In this image some drawings that appear to be a heavy traffic jam with various kinds of vehicles. There is also a motorist who is drawn having weird features that can be viewed as not normal to the other human beings. E expresses his concern that they need to find the courses of the accident. The irony behind this is that the same person who is saying these words is among the people who are deemed to be causing the accident. His poor body features are to symbolize how hypocritical and blusterous the motorist is their poor driving habits normally contributes to such incidents(C Brooks 156-170).

From the above descriptions, it is evident that among the two political editorial cartoons, Graeme MacKays drawings appears to be the best in terms of expressing the various ideas and message to the citizens. Jeff Thompsons image, however, it uses the symbolism technique, it is not easily interpreted by the readers as it expresses irony in it and thus requires a lot of concentration and relations in order to interpret. By looking at the cartoon where the president is seated in the oval office and just looking at the oil coming in, one is able to conclude and capture a lot of information from it as compared to the other cartoon by Jeff Thompson. Mackay uses various images to symbolize different things and to pass information around. An example of a flower vessel that is empty without flowers inside. This shows how the oil the accident has led to an environmental degradation to an extent of getting the flowers is difficult. Such information is not passed across in the other image. On he top of the presidents desk, there is nothing, not even a pen to show that he was doing something before the oil started to enter. This is to symbolize the idleness in the office. It is therefore just to conclude that Graeme MacKays drawings convey much information as compared to the other cartoon.

Reference list

Mills, Adam J., Karen Robson, and Leyland F. Pitt."Using Cartoons to Teach Corporate Social Responsibility." 35.2 (2013): 181-190.

Brooks, Charles, ed. Best Editorial Cartoons: 2011 Edition. Pelican Publishing Company, Inc., 2010.

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