The art of caricature reached Syria at the beginning of the twentieth century. Initially the illustrations were mere depictions of jokes, but they later grew to assume a critical approach toward politics and politicians. This stance is especially evident in two magazines, Almudhik Almubki (1929 – 1966) and Aldumeri (2001 – 2003).
Caricature relies chiefly on the paradox revealed in the contrast between writing and drawing, and on the exaggeration in highlighting the physical and moral attributes of characters. The more a caricature is exaggerated, the stronger it becomes.
Political events became the basic reference for this art form in Syria; even when dealing with fictional characters, cartoonists draw inspiration from real figures active in the political field.
Syria produced many distinguished caricaturists and cartoonists, but because the margin of freedom did not allow exhibitions of their works, most of them now work outside of the country.
With the Syrian revolution, the possibilities to escape censorship have risen. Furthermore with the emergence of many revolutionary periodicals, the art of caricature and political cartoons has been steadily thriving. Young amateur artists, driven by the spirit of freedom, have made names for themselves in the field. Moreover, a new style of caricature has appeared; the hallmark of this style is its dependence on frugality in drawing and speech. This new aesthetic continues to evolve alongside other familiar, classical styles.