Why is Alison Bechdel's Fun Home So Controversial?

Recently Fun home by Alison Bechdel has been listed as one of the most controversial novels of the year. Why do you think this is? Possible ideas include the portrayal of sexuality within the text, and is this more controversial due to the – literally graphic – nature of the text.

  • "Blechdel" should be "Bechdel." :) I had to learn about this graphic novel in both a comics class and my university book club. I think the primary points are sexuality and Bechdel's complicated relationship with her father. These two issues are intertwined because Bechdel is a lesbian and her father, who potentially committed suicide, was closeted and could not come to terms with his identity. Bechdel talks some about sex, as well as how her and her father inverted gender roles. There's also a bit about death. – Emily Deibler 8 years ago
  • What is the controversy? – Christen Mandracchia 8 years ago
  • I've met Bechdel and spoken with her about this very book! I think the controversy lies in the fact that it is so heavily personal, because so much of it involves her own memories, diary entries, and suspicions in her own head. Her exploration of her family is one that I'm not sure many people would even attempt to make, and that is what makes the story so poignant. Not to mention, the story was written in graphic novel form, meaning not only do we get to read of this struggle for identity, but we are given the chance to look at it for ourselves, even if they are recreated fragments of Bechdel's memories. – amandagoodwin 8 years ago
  • I'm uncertain about this topic, especially since the graphic novel came out in 2006, and I haven't really heard this novel regarded as controversial, especially this year? On the topic of Bechdel, one of the more fascinating topics in regard to the author is the "test," named and created by the author in her comic "Dykes to Watch Out For," (1985): Bechdel Test is a simple assessment that names the following three criteria: (1) it has to have at least two women in it, who (2) who talk to each other, about (3) something besides a man. Interestingly enough, not many movies, nor books pass this test. This would be an interesting topic to explore through television, movies, or/and, literature. – danielle577 8 years ago
  • It is a graphic memoir, not a novel per se. And this so call 'controversy' is relative, depending on who sees it what and where. Not sure what this topic will try to accomplish. – T. Palomino 2 years ago

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