Fun Home

Modes of Interaction Between Text and Illustration in Fun Home College

It is often thought that graphic novels and comics are in some way less sophisticated or overall lesser than traditional novels, as if the use of illustrations rather than long text descriptions makes it a more simplistic medium. However, the blending of illustrations and text in graphic novels creates just as complex of an experience, I believe, and provides an interesting opportunity to analyze the modes of interaction between text and illustrations. In this paper, I will be looking closely at Alison Bechdel’s graphic memoir Fun Home to determine some of the ways that the use of illustrations enriches the experience of reading this book. I will show, through analysis of various passages from the book, that the illustrations support the text by revealing the nature of the relationship between Alison and Bruce, using precise imagery that reflects the text, and providing further insight into the way the artist and writer of the book views her world and the people in it. The relationship between Alison and Bruce becomes easier for the reader to understand when looking at the subtleties in their interactions, for example a conversation between them in Bruce’s library from page 84-86 which highlights how their relationship is often...

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