Political Cartoons

Halle Magee and Allison Parker

"Fifty-Fifty again, Joe?"

May 2, 1941

Subject: The Nazi/Soviet division of Iraq and Iran


Context: The possibility of the Nazis and Soviets splitting Iraq and Iran for the resources available there


Technique: this cartoonist uses labeling and symbolism to differentiate Stalin and Hitler from the main subject, the division of oil in Iran and Iraq. The cartoonist also uses exaggeration when he makes the oil rigs much larger than those in real life to show that these are also part of the subject.

Mined area

January 2, 1980

Subject: The Occidental Petroleum Company dumped hazardous waste in Niagara falls and the surrounding areas


Context: The community around Niagara was contaminated, so the United States government was forced to sue the company


Technique: this cartoonist uses symbolism and labeling to reflect the severity of the toxic spill. The young children represent the helplessness and long recovery ahead of those affected by the lack of responsibility of the waste company.

"This must be that strange creature they mentioned in history class"

April 6, 2000

Subject: The stock market and the changes it was going through


Context: Stocks were beginning to be sold off for the first time in many years, longer than many stock brokers' careers.


Technique: this cartoonist uses labeling and symbolism to make the subject more clear. The cartoon has several main characters, but the boy, representing young investors, the main subject, has less exaggeration. The Bull represents the thriving stock market which is beginning to diminish because of the "new creature" (bear-like creature), which represents the unpredicted steep selling of stocks.