Punch and the Cyprus emergency, 1955–1959
in Comic empires
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This chapter examines the way the cartoonists of Punch engaged with the unfolding crisis in Cyprus in a period of immense change – both for the British Empire, post-Suez, and for the magazine itself (the innovative Malcolm Muggeridge resigning as editor and handing over to the more moderate Bernard Hollowood in 1957). By focusing on six Punch cartoons that dealt with aspects of the Cyprus ‘emergency’, the authors show that although Punch had not lost its sense of humour, it had reduced in its acerbic and radical capacity for critical thinking. It also shows how individual cartoon comment – by Michael Cummings, Norman Mansbridge, and Ronald Searle, as well as Mervyn Wilson – could confound the editorial line of the magazine, and level criticism at the Conservative governments of Eden and Macmillan, as well as critiquing the Cypriot side.

Comic empires

Imperialism in cartoons, caricature, and satirical art

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