B., David. () Epileptic /MLA Citation
B., David. Epileptic. : . Print.
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|Uniform Title:||Ascension du haut-mal. Tome 1-3. English|
|Author, Artist:||B., David, 1959-|
|Physical Description:||361 pages : chiefly illustrations ; 23 cm
|Summary:||David B. spent an idyllic early childhood in a small town near Orléans, France, but the family's life changed abruptly when his big brother Jean-Christophe was struck with epilepsy at age eleven. In search of a cure, their parents dragged the family to acupuncturists and magnetic therapists, to mediums and macrobiotic communes, but every new cure ended in disappointment. Angry at his brother for "abandoning" him and at all the quacks who offered them false hope, the author learned to cope by drawing fantastically elaborate battle scenes, creating images that provide a window into his interior life, as well as reliving his grandfathers' experiences in both World Wars through flashbacks. An honest and horrifying portrait of the disease and of the pain and fear it sowed in the family, this graphic autobiography is also a moving depiction of one family's intricate history--From publisher description.
"The first half of French cartoonist David B.'s astonishing L'Ascension du Haut Mal appeared in English a few years ago, but this is the first time the whole book has been translated, and it's one of the greatest graphic novels ever published. Epileptic is a memoir of B.'s evolution into an artist, how learning to re-envision and recreate the world with his eyes and hands became his escape route from the madness and disease that might have destroyed him. B.'s family becomes involved with the shady alternative medicine world in France circa 1970 in an attempt to help his epileptic, unstable older brother. What B. picks up from that culture, from the military history he obsesses over and from his brother's cruel delusions is the raw material of his art: his stylized bodies and objects, which look like woodcuts and urn drawings, and especially his constant conflation of physical reality and symbolic value. With B.'s parents consumed with finding a cure, and his brother's quality of life deteriorating, B.'s dreams of a normal childhood are constantly undermined by his brother's illness, to be replaced by a waking and dreaming life filled with demons. This struggle becomes Epileptic's narrative core. B.'s artwork is magnificent--gorgeously bold, impressionistic representations of the world not as it is but as he's taught himself to perceive it--especially in the heartbreaking dream sequences near the end of the book. B.'s illustrations constantly underscore his writing's wrenching psychological depth; readers can literally see how the chaos of his childhood shaped his vision and mind. --From publisher description.
|Notes:||"Originally published in France in six volumes as L'ascension du haut-mal, by L'Association, Paris, 1996-2004. Volumes 1, 2, and 3 were or[i]ginally published in a single volume in English as Epileptic 1, by L'Association, Paris, in 2002"--Title page verso.