The term caricature emerged in Italy in the sixteenth century and was a form of exaggerated portrait drawing. The distortion or exaggerated representation of people’s features had a long history before that and can be seen in visual work produced by ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans (Robinson 1917). It has often been used for comic effect. Part of what can make caricature comic is the way in which phenotypic excess can suggest the grotesque—a liminality between humanness and something else. Many caricatures of people are anthropomorphic, sometimes producing a feeling of the uncanny.

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