Comics Memory pp 121-141 | Cite as

The Un-Erotic Dancer: Sylvie Rancourt’s Melody

  • Eleanor Ty
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Comics and Graphic Novels book series (PSCGN)


This chapter is one of the first scholarly studies of Melody: Story of a Nude Dancer by Sylvie Rancourt, an early example of autobiographical graphic narrative in Canada. Ty examines the visual and narrative techniques employed by Rancourt to tell a compelling story of a sex worker and compares Melody to Chester Brown’s Paying for It, an autobiographical account of Brown’s experience as a john. Ty argues that Rancourt’s simple style and the doll-like faces of her avatar contribute to the construction of Melody as an innocent girl who falls haphazardly into exotic dancing to survive. The reconstruction of her episodic memory promotes greater sympathy and understanding for a sex worker, for her tawdry life, leading ultimately to Rancourt’s self-empowerment and self-understanding.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eleanor Ty
    • 1
  1. 1.Wilfrid Laurier UniversityWaterlooCanada

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