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Japanese term for comics and print cartoons. Term coined by famed woodblock artist Hokusai in 1814. Outside of Japan, manga usually refers specifically to Japanese comics. Manga developed from a mixture of ukiyo-e and Western styles of drawing, and took its current form shortly after World War II. Literally translated, manga means "random (or whimsical) pictures". Manga really came into being after Dr. Osamu Tezuka, widely acknowledged to be the father of story-based manga, became popular. His manga series cover multiple genres including action adventure (Kimba the White Lion), drama (Black Jack), science fiction (Astro Boy), and horror (Dororo, The Three-eyed One.) Though roughly equivalent to the American comic book, manga holds more importance in Japanese culture than comics do in American culture. In economic terms, weekly sales of comics in Japan exceed the entire annual output of the American comic industry. Several major manga magazines sell several million copies each per week. Manga is well respected both as an art form and as a form of popular literature. (from Wikipedia)

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