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Three-finger salute in support of Myanmar protests

Myanmar protests - ADENECartoon by Anne Derenne

A three-fingered salute that originated in the Hunger Games film series has been adopted by activists from Thailand to Myanmar, becoming a symbol of resistance and solidarity for democracy movements across south-east Asia.

UK cartoonists have been drawing Three-finger salute cartoons in support of the Myanmar Cartoonists Association. The UK Professional Cartoonists' Organisation (PCO) has been sharing a lot of them on Twitter. We share a few of them here. Visit our cartoon collection to see more cartoons about the militiary coup in Myanmar.


10 cartoons for social justice

20 February is the World Day of Social Justice, an international day recognizing the need to promote social justice, which includes efforts to tackle issues such as poverty, exclusion, gender equality, unemployment, human rights, and social protections. The coronavirus pandemic has further accelerated the growth of the gap between rich and poor. The poor not only lack money, they often also lack job security, work safety and access to healthcare. To do out bit in raising awareness, here are 10 powerful cartoons calling for social justice.

Enrico Bertuccioli draws a colorful but haunting image of capitalism, a faceless monster that leaves many destitute. Can capitalism and social justice coexist?



Because the economy tends to favor the rich. Even during the pandemic, the richest people were affected the least and gained even more wealth. Cartoon by Musa GUMUS.



And Syrian cartoonist Morhaf Youssef has an even more grim interpretation of the relationship between the haves and the have-nots.

2588-210115 Poverty (Youssef)_EDIT_2


Turkish cartoonist Kürşat Zaman visualized the daily outlook of too many people around the globe.


Kürşat Zaman - Economic Crisis


And even though Gatis Sluka has a funny take on it, being poor is hard work and very stressful, with life expectancy for poor people being years shorter than for rich people.



The current system allows the wealthy to accumulate more and more wealth, while denying a basic income to many. Cartoon by Timo Essner.



And for some groups, like immigrants, it's even harder to get a fair chance. Cartoon by Galym Boranbayev.



In many countries, there is a class of working poor: people who do have jobs (and work long hours), but who still do not make enough money to make ends meet. Cartoon by Mahnaz Yazdani.



When the government does decide to spend money on the economy, it rarely does anything to solve inequality. Cartoon by Tom Curry.



No matter how you look at it, the rich keep getting richer, also during a global pandemic. Cartoon by Tjeerd Royaards.

201216 Inequality


In the end, social justice is about all of us getting a fair share of the pie, as Carlos David Fuentes aptly illustrates in this image.



Cartoons that incite violence

How_racist_cartoons_helped_ignite_a_massacre_alt_800A racist cartoon that ran in the News and Observer on September 27, 1898 via Wikimedia Commons

Here at Cartoon Movement, we often talk about the power of cartoons to make an impact, to address the wrongs of society, and to inspire change. But, to quote another type of comic, 'with great power comes great responsibility'. Cartoons are powerful tools to address injustice, but because they rely heavily on visual exaggeration and stereotypes, they can also be used to spread hatred and reinforce existing prejudices.

JSTOR Daily tells the story of how a cartoonist helped to incite a massacre with racist cartoons in Wilmington (USA) in 1898. The cartoons constructed political meaning and, to some extent, social reality for readers.

Read the full story here.

It's important to acknowledge the dark side of political cartoons, precisely because they can have such an impact. In the present day, we also need be alert for stereotypes and visual imagery that justifies or propagates racism, sexism, inequality, vilifies the 'other' or calls for violence. 

Cartoons and science in the 18th and 19th century


For those interested in the history of political cartoons, Nature has published an interesting interview with a historian about cartoons from the 18th and 19th century that provide snapshots of social and political debates around the emergence of modern research. The conclusion shouldn't be surprising: pictures are an extremely effective way of conveying a message.

The above illustration by James Gillray from 1802 explores fears about using cowpox to vaccinate against smallpox. The people in the image are sprouting cows on their bodies, reflecting the fear at the time of putting a substance from another animal in your body. Credit: Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division

Read the full interview here.

It's who you know

In partnership with the Centre of Public Authority and International Development (CPAID) of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), we are producing a series of six comics on public authority in different countries across Africa.

This comic, based on research by Dr Patrycja Stys and drawn by Moses Kas, focuses on two women of different social status in a small town in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). How do they access healthcare, justice and education? As one of the women says: It's not about how much you have, it's who you know.

You can read the full comic below or download the PDF here.









Become a Cartoon Movement supporter!

القمع وو حرية التعبيرCartoon by Ahmad Rahma

In December 2020, we celebrated our 10th anniversary (very modestly, given we were, and still are, in lockdown). We are incredibly proud to have been around for a decade. Building and launching Cartoon Movement would not have been possible without funding, which we were lucky to have in 2010. But our aim was always to become self-sustaining as a platform, and we have been since 2013.

Keeping ourselves afloat without external funding, investors or advertisers has been challenging at times. While our hosting and server costs have only gone up over the years, money earned per cartoon sold has either stayed the same or gone down.

So in 2021, we would like to see if we can leverage additional support from our fans. If you like what we do, and if you want to support political satire, press freedom, and freedom of expression in general, please consider making a (onetime or monthly) donation. You can also become a supporter of our Facebook page. Supporting us will not only ensure we remain ad-free, it will also help us pay our cartoonists for the beautiful, scathing, hilarious and always thought-provoking work they do.

Part of our mission is to promote editorial cartoons and we feel we do that best by trying to reach the widest audience possible. Therefore, we will not put our cartoons behind a paywall. However, we are open to experiment with fan involvement. If you became a support, would you for instance be interested to help in the editorial process? Or would you like access to exclusive content such as interviews and behind-the-scenes to get an idea of the creative process behind the cartoon?

Let us know by leaving a comment or by sending us an email at [email protected]


Cartoon by Gatis Sluka


Preview: It's not about how much you have

Sample 2

On Wednesday, we will publish the 5th comics journalism story in our series produced with with the Centre of Public Authority and International Development (CPAID) of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). This comic, drawn by Moses Kas, focuses on two women of different social status in a small town in DRC. How do they access healthcare, justice and education? As one of the women says: It's not about how much you have, it's who you know.