“Tudo melhora depois de uma guerra”: Prosthetic Memory and the Graphic Adaptation of Milton Hatoum’s Dois Irmãos

Frans Weiser, University Of Georgia, USA:

Milton Hatoum’s devoted readership has become an economic asset for crossover audiences the last ten years, and nowhere is this more visible than with his “modern classic,” the Jabuti Prize-winning Dois Irmãos (2000), which has been adapted for television, theater, and comics. Identical twin Brazilian cartoonists Gabriel Bá and Fábio Moon’s graphic adaptation of the same name in 2015 not only won the prestigious Eisner Award, but it was also accompanied by a strong marketing campaign from Hatoum’s editorial press utilizing the brothers’ fraternal status and mass cultural appeal to expand readership bases. Drawing on Angela Landsberg’s “prosthetic memory,” Pointner and Boschenhoff’s exploration of spatial embodiment in graphic adaptations, and recent Latin American comic scholarship linking military dictatorships and the rise of memory discourses, this article demonstrates that Moon and Bá’s hauntingly beautiful rendition, far from being derivative or merely “faithful,” is able to apply medium-specific strategies to even more effectively render Hatoum’s association between individual history and national allegory, in the process introducing new generations of citizens increasingly alienated from Brazil’s darkest period.

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