The Trauma of Diagnosis: Picturing Cancer in Graphic Memoir
Abstract

ABSTRACT:

This essay highlights the visual figurations through which comics artists have expressed the bodily and psychic shock of receiving a cancer diagnosis—their own, or that of a loved one. A cancer diagnosis challenges the sense we have of our place in the world. Graphic memoir pictures that disruption and exposes the workings of the disease, whatever the outcome of the story. I focus on the moment of diagnosis as the gateway into the emotional journey of cancer patients as shaped by the medical norms and clichés of today’s oncological discourse.