Adapting Brittany

The Ker-Is Legend in Bande Dessinée

in European Comic Art
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  • 1 Bangor University
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This article examines two bande dessinée versions of the Breton legend of the flooded city of Ker-Is, Robert Lortac’s 1943 À la découverte de Ker-Is (published in children’s magazine O lo lê) and Claude Auclair and Alain Deschamps’s 1981 Bran Ruz. It argues that through the continuation or appropriation of the legend, these comics offer ideologically filtered views of Bretonness and Brittany from two different politico-historical contexts, occupied France and the postcolonial era. The article also analyses how comic art can be used in productive ways to represent Brittany as a stateless culture, including through text-image reiteration or supplementarity, and using the double page for a bilingual parallel textual-visual practice. It concludes by suggesting that the study of internal colonialism and peripheries such as Brittany is an important addition to research into postcolonial comics.

Contributor Notes

Armelle Blin-Rolland is a lecturer in French studies at Bangor University. Her research interests include adaptation from/into literature, bande dessinée and film, Breton comic art and theories of voice across media. She has published articles on these areas in European Comic Art, Studies in French Cinema and Studies in Comics, and book chapters in Adaptation: Studies in French and Francophone Culture (Peter Lang, 2012) and the forthcoming Adapting the Canon (Legenda). Her monograph Adapted Voices: Transpositions of Céline’s ‘Voyage au bout de la nuit’ and Queneau’s ‘Zazie dans le métro’ was published by Legenda in 2015.


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