Skip to main content

Exhibition Drawn to Purpose

Political Cartoonists

Historically, women have found political or editorial cartooning to be one of the most difficult genres to break into. Even today, few female cartoonists make this the main focus of their careers, although they have made inroads in the field since the early twentieth century. Anne Mergen, the editorial cartoonist for the Miami Daily News from 1933 to 1956, commented on leading issues and figures of her day but took particular interest in community welfare and such civic duties as voting. Contemporary cartoonists Signe Wilkinson, Lisa Benson, and Jen Sorensen have all addressed women's issues, but many other topics as well. Raising concern about the wage gap between men and women, Wilkinson cleverly injects humor with her punch line, "Have a boy." Benson depicts a bemused Uncle Sam searching vainly for bounty in a cornucopia that contains only a big black hole. A younger voice in the field, Sorensen grapples with the growing use of online platforms for political cartooning, commenting pointedly that the "prevailing trend is paying nothing for online content." Unaffiliated with a specific newspaper, Sorensen distributes her syndicated work distributed through alternative print and online outlets.

View Exhibition Objects
 Back to top