Tintin as a Catholic comic

How Catholic Values Went Underground

Authors

  • Kees de Groot Tilburg University

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1558/imre.v19i3.31123

Keywords:

comics, Catholic social thought, anti-Semitism, sexism

Abstract

Historically, the comic series Tintin originates in conservative and, indeed reactionary, circles in Belgian Catholicism. Hergé created Tintin for the children’s weekly of a newspaper that, at that time, shared the main themes of the reactionary Catholic movement: anti-communism, anti-capitalism, anti-Semitism and the fear of “secret societies”, and advocated a leading role for Catholic values in the public domain. During World War II, the adventures were made more fictional. In this way, in the eyes of present-day readers, Tintin has lost much of his politically and economically involved Catholicism. However, Tintin continues to embody Catholic values, albeit in a more implicit way. This interpretation explains those moral aspects of the series that have been considered repellent (e.g. its colonialism), the aspects that have been considered sympathetic (such as its anti-capitalism), and those that are considered self-evident: for instance the dedication to human dignity and the common good.

Author Biography

Kees de Groot, Tilburg University

Lecturer Practical Theology and Religious Studies

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Published

2017-02-14

How to Cite

de Groot, K. (2017). Tintin as a Catholic comic: How Catholic Values Went Underground. Implicit Religion, 19(3), 371–400. https://doi.org/10.1558/imre.v19i3.31123

Section

Articles