2011-2012: Fun Home by Alison Bechdel

Fun HomeIf David Sedaris could draw, and if Bleak House had been a little funnier, you’d have Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home.” — Amy Bloom, author of A Blind Man Can See How Much I Love You

This year’s Williams Reads selection, Fun Home is “…a breakout book for already established comic artist Alison Bechdel, who since 1983 has been chronicling the lives of various characters in her fictional Dykes to Watch Out For.  It’s a coming-of-age classic, marked by gothic twists, sexual angst, and great books, which portrays the parent-child relationship — and the complex longing therein — in moving and universal terms.”1

About the Book and Author

Alison BechdelBechdel, Alison. “What the Little Old Ladies Feel.” Slate, March 27, 2007.

A video of Alison Bechdel at work.

Author Biographies
Alison Bechdel.” In Newsmakers. Vol. 3. Detroit: Gale, 2007.-Williams Only*

Tyrkus, Michael J., and Michael Bronski, eds. “Alison Bechdel.” In Gay & Lesbian Biography. Detroit: St. James Press, 1997.-Williams Only*


A Conversation With Alison Bechdel, 2009.

Alison Bechdel Interview | The Progressive”, n.d.

CityofLiteratureUSA’s Channel-YouTube”, n.d.

Hamer, Diane Ellen. “My father, my self.” The Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide 13 (2006): 37.-Williams Only*

Tulchinsky, Karen X. “Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic.” Herizons, 2008.-Williams Only*

Wilsey, Sean. “The Things They Buried.” The New York Times Book Review, 2006.-Williams Only*


*Certain resources are restricted to the Williams community.  If you are off campus, you can access restricted resources using the proxy server.

Schedule of Events

The following Williams Reads events have been scheduled…with more to come!

Wednesday, January 4, 4:00 PM
Student/Faculty Panel Discussion
Brooks Rogers

Tuesday, January 10, 6:00 PM
The Role “Coming Out” Plays in Fun Home
Join us for a discussion about the difference between sexual acts and identity in the real lives of people who engage in non-heterosexual acts.
Hardy House/Gender and Sexuality Resource Center (FREE PIZZA!)

Wednesday, January 11, 12:00 noon
…But is it Art? How to Read Fun Home
Bring your book, your ideas, and a brown bag lunch to this discussion led by Christopher Bolton, associate professor of comparative and Japanese literature and chair of the comparative literature program.
Paresky Center 2nd Floor, Henze Fireplace Lounge

Thursday, January 12, 8:00 PM
“Making the Boys”
Come watch this new documentary about the 1970 film “The Boys in the Band,” released a year after the Stonewall riots referred to on Fun Home page 104.
Hardy House/Gender and Sexuality Resource Center (FREE POPCORN!)

Wednesday, January 18, 12:00 noon
Faculty Club Luncheon for Staff
Discussion of Fun Home with Christopher Bolton, associate professor of comparative and Japanese literature and chair of the comparative literature program.
Faculty Club Lower Level
RSVP to Terry Waryjasz

Monday, January 23, 7:00 pm
Join Justin Adkins, director of gender, sexuality and activism, and Mercedea Shriver, reference and web development librarian, for a discussion about the role of gender expression in Fun Home.
Paresky Center 2nd Floor, Henze Fireplace Lounge

Tuesday, January 24, 7:00 pm-9:00 pm
Draw your own comic with Amy Podmore, professor of art.
Paresky Center, Great Hall
Limited to 30 people. RSVP to Maggie Driscoll

Library Exhibit Bibliography

Bechdel, Alison. The Best American Comics 2011. Edited by Jessica Abel and Matt Madden. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 2011.

Bechdel, Alison. The Essential Dykes to Watch out For. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2008.

Bechdel, Alison. “Serial Monogamy.” In The Penguin Book of Lesbian Short Stories, edited by Margaret Reynolds, 359-67. New York: Viking, 1993.

Bechdel, Alison. “Vermont.” In State by State : A Panoramic Portrait of America, edited by Matt Weiland and Sean Wilsey, 461-68. New York, NY: Ecco, 2008.

Bolonik, Kera. “Alison Bechdel Retires Her Infamous “Dykes.”.” New York, December 1, 2008, 81.

Chute, Hillary L. “Animating an Archive: Repetition and Regeneration in Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home.” In Graphic Women : Life Narrative and Contemporary Comics, 175-217. New York: Columbia University Press, 2010.

Cvetkovich, Ann. “Drawing the Archive in Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home.” Women’s Studies Quarterly 36, no. 1-2 (2008): 111-28.

Gambone, Philip. “Alison Bechdel.” In Travels in a Gay Nation : Portraits of LGBTQ Americans, 38-44. Madison, Wis.: University of Wisconsin Press, 2010.

Gardner, Jared. “Autography’s Biography, 1972-2007.” Biography 31, no. 1 (2008): 1+.

Herring, Scott. “Queer Infrastructure.” In Another Country : Queer Anti-Urbanism, 149-80. New York: New York University Press, 2010.

Lemberg, Jennifer. “Closing the Gap in Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home.” Women’s Studies Quarterly 36, no. 1-2 (2008): 129-40.

Marler, Regina. “Drawn to the Truth: Superstar Queer Cartoonist Alison Bechdel Takes Time out from Chronicling the Lesbian World to Pen a Moody, Haunting Memoir About Growing up, Coming out, and Discovering That Her Dad Was Also Gay.” The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine), June 20, 2006, 120+.

McCloud, Scott. Reinventing Comics. 1st Perennial ed. New York: Perennial, 2000.

Sabin, Roger. Comics, Comix & Graphic Novels. London: Phaidon, 1996.

Watson, Julia. “Autographic Disclosures and Genealogies of Desire in Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home.” Biography 31, no. 1 (2008): 27+.

Weiner, Stephen, and N. C. Christopher Couch. Faster Than a Speeding Bullet : The Rise of the Graphic Novel. New York: NBM Pub., 2003.

Weiner, Stephen, and Keith R. A. DeCandido. The 101 Best Graphic Novels. New York: NBM, 2001.

Wolk, Douglas. “Alison Bechdel: Reframing Memory.” In Reading Comics : How Graphic Novels Work and What They Mean, 359-64. Cambridge, MA: Da Capo Press, 2007.

Wyatt, Neal. “Coming out in Print: Gay and Lesbian Memoirs.” Library Journal, May 1, 2007, 116.