A memoir done in the form of a graphic novel by a cult favorite comic artist offers a darkly funny family portrait that details her relationship with her father--a funeral home director, high school English teacher, and closeted homosexual.
In this groundbreaking, bestselling graphic memoir, Alison Bechdel charts her fraught relationship with her late father. In her hands, personal history becomes a work of amazing subtlety and power, written with controlled force and enlivened with humor, rich literary allusion, and heartbreaking detail. Distant and exacting, Bruce Bechdel was an English teacher and director of the town funeral home, which Alison and her family referred to as the "Fun Home." It was not until college that Alison, who had recently come out as a lesbian, discovered that her father was also gay. A few weeks after this revelation, he was dead, leaving a legacy of mystery for his daughter to resolve.
Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic has quickly joined the ranks of celebrated literary graphic novels. Set in part at a family-run funeral home, the book explores Alison’s complicated relationship with her father, a closeted gay man. Amid the tensions of her home life, Alison discovers her own lesbian sexuality and her talent for drawing. The coming-of-age story and graphic format appeal to students. However, the book’s nonlinear structure; intertextuality with modernist novels, Greek myths, and other works; and frank representations of sexuality and death present challenges in the classroom. This volume offers strategies for teaching Fun Home in a variety of courses, including literature, women’s and gender studies, art, and education. Part 1, “Materials,â€ outlines the text’s literary, historical, and theoretical allusions. The essays of part 2, “Approaches,â€ emphasize the work’s genres, including autobiography and graphic narrative, as well as its psychological dimensions, including trauma, disability, and queer identity. The essays give options for reading Fun Home along with Bechdel’s letters and drafts; her long-running comic strip, Dykes to Watch Out For; the Broadway musical adaptation of the book; and other stories of LGBTQ lives.
Alison Bechdel's celebrated graphic memoir, lovingly adapted into a riveting new musical.
The New York Times–bestselling graphic memoir about Alison Bechdel, author of Fun Home, becoming the artist her mother wanted to be. Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home was a pop culture and literary phenomenon. Now, a second thrilling tale of filial sleuthery, this time about her mother: voracious reader, music lover, passionate amateur actor. Also a woman, unhappily married to a closeted gay man, whose artistic aspirations simmered under the surface of Bechdel's childhood…and who stopped touching or kissing her daughter good night, forever, when she was seven. Poignantly, hilariously, Bechdel embarks on a quest for answers concerning the mother-daughter gulf. It's a richly layered search that leads readers from the fascinating life and work of the iconic twentieth-century psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott, to one explosively illuminating Dr. Seuss illustration, to Bechdel’s own (serially monogamous) adult love life. And, finally, back to Mother—to a truce, fragile and real-time, that will move and astonish all adult children of gifted mothers. A New York Times, USA Today, Time, Slate, and Barnes & Noble Best Book of the Year “As complicated, brainy, inventive and satisfying as the finest prose memoirs.”—New York Times Book Review “A work of the most humane kind of genius, bravely going right to the heart of things: why we are who we are. It's also incredibly funny. And visually stunning. And page-turningly addictive. And heartbreaking.”—Jonathan Safran Foer “Many of us are living out the unlived lives of our mothers. Alison Bechdel has written a graphic novel about this; sort of like a comic book by Virginia Woolf. You won't believe it until you read it—and you must!”—Gloria Steinem
Theatre has long been considered a feminine interest for which women consistently purchase the majority of tickets, while the shows they are seeing typically are written and brought to the stage by men. Furthermore, the stories these productions tell are often about men, and the complex leading roles in these shows are written for and performed by male actors. Despite this imbalance, the feminist voice presses to be heard and has done so with more success than ever before. In From Aphra Behn to Fun Home: A Cultural History of Feminist Theatre, Carey Purcell traces the evolution of these important artists and productions over several centuries. After examining the roots of feminist theatre in early Greek plays and looking at occasional works produced before the twentieth century, Purcell then identifies the key players and productions that have emerged over the last several decades. This book covers the heyday of the second wave feminist movement—which saw the growth of female-centric theatre groups—and highlights the work of playwrights such as Caryl Churchill, Pam Gems, and Wendy Wasserstein. Other prominent artists discussed here include playwrights Paula Vogel Lynn and Tony-award winning directors Garry Hynes and Julie Taymor. The volume also examines diversity in contemporary feminist theatre—with discussions of such playwrights as Young Jean Lee and Lynn Nottage—and a look toward the future. Purcell explores the very nature of feminist theater—does it qualify if a play is written by a woman or does it just need to feature strong female characters?—as well as how notable activist work for feminism has played a pivotal role in theatre. An engaging survey of female artists on stage and behind the scenes, From Aphra Behn to Fun Home will be of interest to theatregoers and anyone interested in the invaluable contributions of women in the performing arts.
"Based on the graphic novel by Alison Bechdel."
Literary Nonfiction. Growing up queer in the deep South, Genevieve Hudson longed for stories about lives like her own. So she turned to Alison Bechdel's groundbreaking graphic memoir, FUN HOME. In its panels, she found sly references to Bechdel's personal influences. A Little in Love with Everyone is Hudson's journey down a rabbit hole of queer heroes like Audre Lorde, Eileen Myles, and Adrienne Rich, who turned their stories into art and empowered future generations to embrace their own truths. This book is part of a new series from Fiction Advocate called Afterwords.
Research Paper (undergraduate) from the year 2018 in the subject American Studies - Literature, grade: 1,0, University of Erfurt (Philosopische Fakultät), course: Literature in Images: Graphic Novels, language: English, abstract: This work analyzes the perception of authencity in "Fun Home". Alison Bechdel’s "Fun Home" from 2007 is a graphic memoir that tries to create a sense of truthfulness to the reality of the author’s memories by employing various means. This paper examines the techniques Bechdel uses for the creation of what may look for the reader like authenticity. By using for example Philippe Lejeune’s autobiographical pact the text closely analyzes the presentation of text and image concerning the protagonist Alison and the narrating voice as well as the role of photographs in the text. By investigating the protagonists self-portrayal through text and images this paper tries to point out the successfulness of appearing truth of the story as well as distinguish in which instance a disruption of before identified means in form of fictionalization can be found in the text and how this influences the perception of its authenticity. The second part of the paper then focuses on photography as another means to invoke a perception of truthfulness in the text with special attention to photography as means of memory and truth, based on theories by Roland Barthes and Marianne Hirsch as well as its possible fictionalization through the confines of the graphic novel genre and its significance in relation to the text’s authenticity.