The Ordinary Devoted Mother Analysis

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The Theme of Reading and Writing in Bechdel’s Work Alison Bechdel isn’t a normal author. She uses graphics, and wordplay to tell a very engaging, and interesting story. One of these stories titled “The Ordinary Devoted Mother”, Bechdel tells the story of her trying to write a memoir about her mom. One of the major themes in this story is reading, and writing. Bechdel explores what writing is, how it is important, and how she perceives writing herself. “I want to capture her voice, her precise wording, her deadpan humor. I don’t think I could possibly re-create it on my own.” As you see her Bechdel is having an incredibly hard time trying to come up with the words to say. She looks to the greats like Virginia Woolf and Sylvia Plath, and she studies their writing techniques to try to improve her own. She keeps trying to change her style instead of making her own style. Like her mom said in this quote, “Alison you should just write whatever you want to write.” Bechdel is struggling to grasp what she’s missing in her story. She goes to a psychiatrist to try to get answers, but still comes up dry. She just can’t stop thinking about what she’s missing from the story. This is reflected in her writing throughout the piece. …show more content…

She feels writing is a reflection of her inner thoughts. Writing helps her to bring out her struggles, and inner feelings about her life. When she looks back at Woolf’s work she says “Virginia Woolf seems to have considered her diary to be more of an external record, an account of “Life” rather than the “soul”. This is the same way that Bechdel’s mother writes. She doesn’t look into the soul, Bechdel does. Bechdel investigates her own soul in order to bring the truth out in her writing. Bechdel also takes some ideas from both Woolf and her mom. For instance like Woolf Bechdel wants to learn more about her mom. This unlocks memories that she’s tried to

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