My first experience with Sarah Glidden’s work was via her debut, How To Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less (published by, of all people, DC Vertigo!). That book saw Glidden take the ‘Birthright Tour,’ an Israeli government funded initiative  traversing through Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Masada and other places, where she constantly finds a conflict between her pre-conceived notions and what she’s experiencing, and you can’t help but feel an affinity for her as she attempts to navigate knotty political and personal waters.

She has since been making political, informative comics for various online platforms- Cartoon Movement, the Jewish Quarterly and Symbolia Magazine amongst others. This is going to sound incredibly stupid, but I find it very difficult to engage with long prose non-fiction texts, so I’m glad to see the slow expansion of the same genre in comics, and I really appreciate Glidden’s presence in comics, and her smart, thoughtful, and clear take on things.

I was very pleased to hear, then, of Drawn and Quarterly’s announcement at the beginning of this year, regarding the publishing of her second book, Rolling Blackouts (due for release in 2014), another graphic journalism work which finds Glidden following reporters in Iraq, Lebanon and Syria. Her comics are intelligent and informative and you should definitely check them out.

You can find Glidden’s website here and buy her work here.



  1. Hi Dirk,

    It’s supposed to be a selection of great women creators, chosen by the various contributors on The Beat, not a comprehensive list, otherwise we’d be here a LONG time!

  2. And, really: If I have to even say the words “Lynda Barry” to you without you already having an essay in place, I’m coming over there and taking away your license to commit comics criticism. Don’t make me say this twice.

  3. Hi, Zainab,

    Screw all of that. There are STANDARDS to maintain, here. People need to be reminded, on every occasion possible, that some women just fucking kick ass every time they put pen to paper.

    That is all. Or else.

  4. Dirk Deppey’s back! Finally!! The world of comics has been a much poorer place without you, good sir!

    I know this could sound like hyperbole, but I think Ai Yazawa is one of the best cartoonists on the planet.

    I don’t know the work of Posy Simmonds or Phoebe Gloeckner, but I see that as being Deppey’s fault since he abandoned us after changed.

  5. You should definitely check out Posy Simmonds’ stuff, Chris- Literary Life, Tamara Drewe and Gemma Bovery are all very, very good.

  6. — and, for the record, of course Ai Yazawa fucking rocks like a heart attack. I only wish that more Western comics fans knew this, if for no other reason that I really, really want to walk up to her in San Diego and shake her hand, y’know? What a brilliant goddamned cartoonist…

  7. Dirk,

    I know you were unceremoniously let go. I was trying to be diplomatic because I kinda know someone on the TCJ really well. I vastly prefer your work to anyone currently on staff at TCJ. Even though I think highly of the person I know, I find the current TCJ unreadable.

    Basically, I *really* miss your writing. I wish you’d come back, but I understand if you have bad feelings about getting back in the game.


    If you and Dirk are signing off on Posy Simmonds, I’m going to have one of her books in my hands ASAP. Seriously, I’m going to look for anything by her I can find tomorrow. If I can’t find anything this weekend while I’m in Manhattan, I’m going straight to Amazon on Sunday night.

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