Peanuts`s imagery as an icon of modern Western culture


Peanuts, sometimes referred to as a perfect comics, is a long-running comic strip by the artist Charles M. Schulz. The publishing of this comics spanned the decade of almost 50 years: from 1950 to 2000. It only ceased after the death of the  author and artist of the series. During its long history, Peanuts comic strip was published in a number of newspapers and magazines along with numerous separate editions.


 It won`t be an exaggeration to suggest that Peanuts nowadays is one of the most recognizable and influential comics in western mass culture . Its characters have become well-known types, frequently featured in a whole range of mass culture products. Being more than just literary characters, they eventually transformed into fixed types and cultural symbols. In a line with a comic strip canon, all text which accompanies drawings is arranged into separated parts in thought bubbles and frames, organized into comic panels.


Apparently, the most recognizable of all images is Snoopy, pet dog of Charlie Brown, another protagonist. Initially being a conventional dog, Snoopy evolved into a vivid, personalized character with habits, views and opinions of his own.


But it was not merely his personality that made Snoopy so well-known and popular, but also his appearance or, to put it in other words, the visual presentation of the character. You are very unlikely not to recognize Snoopy visually even though you may never have read the authentic comic strip.


The appearance of the characters and the visual manner of the comics itself are core elements of Peanut`s way of becoming a world-famous cult work. Being drawn in a simple, unpretentious, even primitive way, Peanuts may resemble children`s drawings. Nevertheless, this primitive visual manner facilitated a multiple copying of the characters without losing their instantly recognized appearance. In other words, Snoopy is an ideal image to copy and replicate. This fact obviously contributes the global fame of the comic strip and its wide circulation in modern culture and art.

by Tieriekhova Masha


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