Paper short abstract:
Using examples from work in progress on my graphic novel, 'The Things that Shaped Me', I will share my methodological and practical approaches to writing about real and imagined, past and present, traumatic events.
Paper long abstract:
Using primarily evocative auto-ethnographic methodology, I'm currently writing a graphic novel which tells a first person story navigating a complicated relationship between a mother and a daughter, set against the backdrop of the broader social issues of the pandemic lockdown. Crisis and trauma are central themes of my story. As the narrative develops, I pay particular attention to how the simultaneous personal, political and social narratives are interwoven. By straddling time, generations, realities and fantasies, I attempt to question the relationship between the present, the past and the future.
I will focus on the following aspects of my methodology:
- Evocative auto-ethnography.
- Fiction-based research.
- Comics-based research.
- Wordless-comics based research.
- The special relationship between trauma, memory and auto-ethnography.
I will look at the practical aspects of writing this graphic novel in relation to :
- My use of abstraction, imagery, allegory and anthropomorphism in the
construction of my narrative.
- Managing time and temporality
- Developing characterisation
- Responding to contemporary events as they unfold
- Integrating social and political commentary with individual emotions
Each of these aspects will be accompanied by illustrations from my graphic novel. work in progress.
Crisis through comics: a roundtable discussion on graphic anthropology