Joe Sacco

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Joe Sacco in 2005

Joe Sacco (born October 2, 1960) is a Maltese-American cartoonist and journalist.


  • Some people have told me that hiding my eyes makes it easier for them to put themselves in my shoes, so I've kind of stuck with it. I'm a nondescript figure; on some level, I'm a cipher. The thing is: I don't want to emote too much when I draw myself. The stories are about other people, not me. I'd rather emphasise[sic] their feelings…
  • With Footnotes, I want people to appreciate the lost molecules of conflict: the details and sideshows that only exist until the people who remember them die. But I also want them to remember, when they're watchi the news, that it comes to them out of context and that history always comes back to haunt you. An incident can resonate for a whole century or even longer.
    • On what he hoped to achieve with his work Footnotes in “Eyeless in Gaza” in The Guardian (2009 Nov 21)
  • History is a combination of a lot of things. You can’t isolate events today and say, “Oh, well, this happened—those awful people.” The acts might be brutal, but there must be a context to it. I certainly didn’t want to drop the reader into those incidents without telling the story of, well: Why are there refugees? Why were the Israelis and the Palestinians battling along the border? Who were the fedayeen? What was the Israeli response to that? But more than that, I think, for me, the book ends up being—this is going to sound strange—a dead end. Because I don’t know where to go from here, except to delve into human psychology. I think I understand how history works. I understand why one people are battling another people. I understand that they both want land. But ultimately there’s a level that I haven’t really got to yet…
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