Balancing on Borders: Graphic Expressions and Female Realities in Fun Home and Persepolis
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In this thesis, I explore the relationship between the graphic form and female autobiographies. By studying Satrapi’s Persepolis and Bechdel’s Fun Home, I explain why the graphic form suits autobiographies by women and demonstrate how the artists convey alternative views on history and communicate with their readers. This thesis opens with discussing theories on the graphic form and the genre. I problematize the authenticity of memoirs, the possibilities of visual communication, the link between fractured images and memory, and the need for active readers. Next, I connect these discussions to Persepolis by highlighting Satrapi’s use of the child perspective and her graphic representations of females as individuals to educate her readers, followed by a study on Fun Home, where I emphasize Bechdel’s inclusion of intertexts and realistically drawn photographs to create recognition and reveal the queerness of her family. My thesis suggests that the graphic form suits female representations of memories because subjective and artistic expressions communicate emotions and create intimate relationships between the readers and narrators. Moreover, I will suggest that sequential art is suitable for autobiographies because the form reflects human memories, as they are experienced as subjective fragments of real events.