Asterix und das Atomkraftwerk. Bibliographic forensics of a German underground comic

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Abstract

Created in Vienna in 1978 by cutting up existing Asterix comic books, rearranging selected panels and adding a new narrative into the speech bubbles. The story of the successful resistance of the Gaulish village that was declared a site for a nuclear power plant resonated with the anti-nuclear movement. Pirated copies were circulation in various German towns even before the first German edition was stopped through legal action by the copyright owners of the Asterix brand. Well over 20 German-language print versions have been identified. The volume was translated and adapted to Dutch, French and various dialects Spanish, incl. Basque. Asterix und das Atomkraftwerk is an attempt at a fictional narrative that expresses the concerns of the movement and that also, in its fictional successful ending, signals its hopes. The rapid dissemination of the title in its various forms is a testament to how much the treatment of the topic and sentiments expressed therein resonated in the alternative scene. It also effectively highlights the need among the movement for some comic relief in an otherwise highly intense and serious debate.This study describes the print variants in the various languages and provides a chronology of their publication.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAmsterdam, Netherlands
PublisherStichting Laka
Number of pages85
ISBN (Print)9789082396706
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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