Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Duran Duran, Imelda Marcos, and Me

Mapa, Lorina (Author/Illustrator)
Conundrum Press 2017. 136 pages
First published: 2017
ISBN: 9781772620115 (paperback)
Original language: English
Book type: Graphic Text
Book genre: Memoir

Text Elements:

characterization, multimodal, point of view, setting

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL Intensive & Enriched
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

This graphic memoir is a moving tribute to a daughter’s love for her father, as well as for her home country of the Philippines. After her beloved father’s sudden death, Rina gets on a plane from Montréal to Manila. Her journey plunges her into an ocean of memories from her youth in the 1980s.

As her personal memories flood to the surface, so do those of the context in which she grew up. From pop culture references to Depeche Mode or Duran Duran, to the revolution that overthrew the Marcos regime, to an exploration of religion in the Philippines.

Composed in a frank, direct and wry tone that effortlessly brings readers into Rina’s experiences, the vivid writing gives life to the political, cultural and social context of the time: “Before the world witnessed the events of China’s Tiananmen Square, Filipino nuns placed themselves on the front lines and said the rosary as they faced down tanks. While all this was going on, safe in our gated village of Ayala Alabang, Tonton was in a foul mood. ‘History is being made and I’m stuck here with the babies!’”

Beautifully rendered black and white panelling draws on media references, internal emotional shifts, as well as time navigation through subtle visual cues. Illustrated charts that link Rina’s cultural awakening to film, novels and music are used to great effect, illuminating her teenage years with roaring life. A 1980s discography can be found at the back.

An intense, humorous and highly readable memoir about growing up and becoming whole.

  •  

    Splash pages and subject-to-subject panel transitions, along with narrative voice-overs, are used to render key scenes. Review the conventions of graphic novels, focusing on use of panel transitions and narrative voice, prior to reading.

  •  In small book club groups, discuss the way the author plays with time and weaves the personal and the political into her story.
  •  

    This text can serve as a model for the production of memoirs or other narratives on the subject of growing up. Analyze the types of scenes that the author includes in her story and make notes on how these production decisions impact the reading experience.

  •  

    In pairs, using teacher-selected websites, listen to the music of Duran Duran and watch video clips about the oppressive Marcos regime in the Philippines. Take notes and discuss the music and videos.

  •  

    In teams, discuss the significance of the moments that merited the use of a full (splash) page. Write a persuasive paragraph about a particularly effective splash page.

  •  

    Write a mini-version of your own graphic memoir. Like the author, include a five-year range discography. Make a clear link between a song and a personal anecdote.

  • To exercise critical judgment
  • To use creativity
  • To use information and communications technologies
  • Citizenship and Community Life
  • Health and Well-Being
  • Personal Development
  • Social Sciences