Confession and Camouflage: Biographical Memory in Visual Narratives by Peter Sis, Uri Orlev and Marta Ignerska

Katarzyna Smyczyńska



In my article, I argue that Peter Sis’ Tibet Through the Red Box (1998) and the Polish edition of Uri Orlev's Granny Knits (first published in Hebrew in 1981) illustrated by Marta Ignerska (2009) represent two different forms of intergenerational remembering. The visual narratives in question are artistic portrayals of the narrators’ biographical memory, and in some sense it is possible to view both works as narratives in which intergenerational connectivity is an integral aspect of the story. However, in each book the symbolic return to childhood has a different character. In Orlev and Ignerska's book, the rigidly delineated categories of “childhood” and “adulthood” are not really applicable, as they merge on every possible level – in their formal, expressive, and philosophical aspects. In Sis’ narrative, the (visual) language may resemble conventions associated with children's literature, but it is primarily an element of the book's nostalgic message, not a signal of the narrator's authentic and permanent connection with his child self.

Słowa kluczowe

biographical memory; camouflage; child and adult self; confession; convergence; intergenerational connectivity; irony

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