Kelley, Michael J. "Mirrored discourse in Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home." In: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics 5.1 (2014), S. 42–57.
Added by: joachim (2015-04-20 11:16)
|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Kelley2014
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Keywords: "Fun Home", Bechdel. Alison, Gender, History comics, Sexuality, USA
Collection: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics
In their introduction to Modern Fiction Studies’ 2006 special issue on graphic narratives, Hillary Chute and Marianne DeKoven direct attention to the unique powers of the genre’s layered language of text and image, calling these narratives works that are ‘in their very structure and grammar, cross-discursive’ (768). In graphic narrative, they state, the rhetorical capacities of word and image, often perceived as binary, enter into dialogue. Alison Bechdel uses this cross-discursiveness in a candid, effective and affective representation of the formative experiences captured in Fun Home. To date, however, what has been left out of the conversation on Bechdel’s work is how the affective nature of her complex relationship with her father – the anger, guilt and shame Bechdel confronts, which both create and inhibit her self-realization – so well mirrors the historical context in which this relationship occurs. I submit that by framing the narrative of her father’s and her own discovery of sexual identity as before and after the seminal historical event of the Stonewall Riots – as the chronology of their biographies dictates – and by choosing the graphic narrative as her medium, Bechdel melds the discursiveness of the late twentieth century homosexual experience with that of the graphic narrative.
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