The Contract with God Trilogy: Life on Dropsie Avenue

~by Will Eisner

The Contract with God Trilogy brings together three of Eisner's works: A Contract with God and Other Tenement Stories (considered to be the first graphic novel), A Life Force, and Dropsie Avenue.

A Contract with God and Other Tenement Stories consists of four vignettes taking place in the 1930s in a Bronx tenement: Cookalein, The Super, The Street Singer, and A Contract With God. This tenement is also the setting for A Life Force and is the main component of Dropsie Avenue which follows the births, deaths, and rebirths of the neighborhood itself.

The stories are semi-autobiographical and charged with emotion. Eisner is a masterful story-teller and uses the graphic novel medium extraordinarily well, especially when considering that this literary style was only beginning to be established when he was writing. He brought his talent and artistic skill to this new medium, paving the way for others to follow. The Contract with God Trilogy provides a marvelous example of his important and ground-breaking work.

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