Self-reflexive Anthropomorphism in Cece Bell’s Autobiographical Comics: A Study of the Transgressions of Narrative Levels


  • Sandra Mina Takakura UEPA



autobiographical comics, anthropomorphism, El Deafo, metalepsis, digital comics


Cece Bell released her autobiographical comic El Deafo (2014) in print and digital versions, transposing herself into the anthropomorphic rabbit Cece, who speaks of her hearing loss experience at four after having contracted meningitis. Young Cece wears a hearing aid on her long rabbit ears, showing her animal, human, and technological hybrid body to others. Nevertheless, she assumes the identity of the superhero “El Deafo,” her alter-ego, to cope with her daily challenges in a community composed mostly of hearing individuals, first as an escape to her imaginary world and later for accepting her identity as deaf. This paper aims to analyse El Deafo as an autobiographical comic, considering the representation of deafness through an unstable hybrid body and a transgression of the narrative levels based on the notion of metalepsis, drawn by Genette, Kukkonen, and Ryan in various media.


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