Graphic Life Writing in Kaisa Leka's I Am Not These Feet
Romu, Leena (2016)
Framescapes: Graphic Narrative Intertexts
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Many of the celebrated graphic novels that have been published in recent years are autobiographical. The current autobiographical trend is noticiable also in the Finnish comics scene and many cartoonists get their inspiration from the real life. One of the most noteworthy Finnish autobiographical comic book artists is Kaisa Leka who has published several comics based on her own life and experiences. Leka's stories concentrate on the construction of her identity: who she is as a person, as a comic book artist and as a practitioner of Hare Krishna. Both of Leka's feet were amputated below the knee in 2002 because of a difficult congenital malformation and her comic book I Am Not These Feet (2003) concentrates on the process of the amputation. In this chapter, I discuss the representations of embodiment in Leka's book by using the concept of pictorial embodiment by comics scholar Elisabeth El Refaie. I will concentrate especially on the drawing style and the pictorial choices for depicting bodies, disability and gender.
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