• France's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Sexism row hits France's international comic fest
French Culture Minister Fleur Pellerin visits the Angouleme International Comics Festival in 2015. Photo: AFP

Sexism row hits France's international comic fest

AFP · 7 Jan 2016, 09:10

Published: 07 Jan 2016 09:10 GMT+01:00

The Angouleme festival, which draws hundreds of thousands of visitors to the city in southwestern France, is one of the world's biggest comics events.
   
"The festival is, without removing anyone, going to add additional female author names to its list of those considered for the Grand Prix 2016," the organisers said in a statement.
  
The lack of women among the 30 nominees for the prestigious prize prompted female authors to call for a boycott and generated a social media effort to highlight the work of women comics creators.
   
Several nominees, including Frenchmen Riad Sattouf and Joann Sfar as well as Americans Daniel Clowes and Charles Burns, had asked in an act of solidarity that their names be pulled from the list of nominees.
   
The organisers of the January 28-31 festival "cannot contort the reality" of the comics industry, which has been nearly exclusively male-dominated, festival director Franck Bondoux said.
   
"The Angouleme festival loves women... but it cannot rewrite the history of comics," the statement said.
   
Organisers defended the event defended itself, noting it has played an important role in the emergence of woman authors such as Julie Maroh and Marjane Satrapi, who penned the Iranian Revolution coming-of-age story "Persepolis".
   
France's Culture Minister Fleur Pellerin waded into the controversy on Wednesday, saying she found it "rather unusual" that no women were on the list of nominees.
   
A collective of about 200 female comics authors took to the Internet to express their outrage over the lack of women nominees.
Story continues below…
   
"We rise up against this obvious discrimination, this total negation of our representation in a medium that includes more and more women," the group, Comics Creators Against Sexism, wrote on its blog.
   
Only one woman, Florence Cestac, has been honoured with the Grand Prix at the festival, which she won 16 years ago.
   
Women make up just over 12 percent of professionals in the world of Francophone comics, according to comic journalists and critics association ACBD.

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
France to see 90,000 security staff on patrol at Euro 2016
Members of French riot police take part in a mock terrorist attack exercise at the Georges Pompidou stadium in Valence. Photo: AFP

France has vowed to do "everything possible to avoid a terrorist attack" at the Euro 2016 tournament.

List of French targets found in Adeslam's home
Photo: AFP

Areas of Paris, Marseille and Toulouse were on the list of possible targets for an attack.

The trials and tribulations of moving to rural France
Moving to rural France is not all rosé and cheese. Photo: Philippe Rouzet/Flickr

Moving to rural France can be a dream come true, but it doesn't always work out as planned.

Opinion - Strikes in France
Why the French are right to go on strike
Opinion: Why the French are entirely right to go on strike all the time. Photo: Boris Horvat/AFP

There are good reasons why the French go on strike a lot.

LATEST: Where in France the petrol shortage is biting
Photo: Essence

The latest estimates say some 4,000 of the country’s 12,000 petrol stations are now out of fuel or running low.

IN PICTURES: The fuel crisis around France
Photo: AFP

The fuel crisis in France has made for some striking photos.

A complete guide to France's (many) upcoming strikes
All photos: AFP

A rundown of all the strikes in France today and in the coming days and weeks. Good luck.

Foreign investment rises in all of Europe except France
Photo: Thomas Samson/AFP

France is the only country in Europe to have seen a net drop in foreign investment this year...

French unions to switch protests to electricity supplies
Photo: AFP

Are things about to get a lot worse for the French public?

Paris: Street artist makes the Louvre pyramid disappear
Photo: JRart/Twitter

Now you see it, now you don't.

Society
Opinion: Why the French are absolutely right to go on strike
Sponsored Article
Eat, learn, live: unforgettable holidays in France
National
Here's why both sides despise France's labour reforms
National
Who is really to blame for the fuel crisis in France?
How to avoid running out of fuel if you're coming to France
National
Here are the parts of France hardest hit by the fuel shortages
Travel
It will soon be time to say 'au revoir' to the Paris Metro ticket
Culture
Revealed: The ultimate sex map of France
National
Migrants at Calais camp given dignity in death
International
How good is security at Charles de Gaulle airport?
Culture
How to make a traditional French cassoulet
Culture
IN PICS: Commuter trains in Paris get royal makeover
International
Terror attack 'likeliest cause' of missing EgyptAir plane
International
Who was on board the missing EgyptAir flight from Paris?
Lifestyle
New map reveals Paris flat prices by Metro station
Culture
Paris: Here's how to find French cinema in English
Culture
How to say 'OUCH' in French (and ten other sounds)
National
Get ready: France to be hit by week of transport strikes
Culture
France readies for first national 'motorway party'
National
Is this the eco-solution to France's wild-peeing plague?
Sport
Paris mayor wants Seine to be 'swimmable' before Olympics
National
IN PICTURES: Police car torched in Paris protests
National
Why there's another rail strike in France and more to come
National
Why does 'everyone in France hate the police'?
2,735
jobs available