Drawing in Drag by Marie Duval
A 42 page colour graphic novel drawn in the style of nineteenth-century cartoonist Marie Duval. Grennan was Principal Investigator for the 12 month research project funded by London publisher Book Works and Arts Council, England, in partnership with Chetham’s Library and Manchester City Council Libraries. Grennan undertook the whole adaptation.
Drawing in Drag by Marie Duval (ISBN 978-1906012984), is a 42 page graphic novel, drawn in the style of nineteenth-century cartoonist Marie Duval.
During the nineteenth century, writers and artists in the leisure publishing industries frequently wrote and drew under pseudonyms. They did this to either project a saleable identity or to dissociate themselves from their outputs. This included the practice of pseudonymously changing gender.
In 2018, Grennan discovered a book illustrated by nineteenth-century cartoonist and actor Marie Duval, under the male pseudonym ‘Ambrose Clarke’.
This discovery occasioned a research question: what (and how) would Duval draw, if she revived in the Manchester of 2018? The research required a comparison of the nineteenth and twenty-first-century city, an analysis of Duval’s urban topics and her visual style, with an analysis of re-gendering in the leisure industries. Drawing in Drag by Marie Duval provided a new resource for historic and stylistic analysis of Duval’s drawings, for analysis of re-gendering in leisure cultures, a demonstration of historiography as a method of analysis and the wide public and academic dissemination of insights.
The research demonstrates the capacity of historiography as a method of analysis. It indexes the significance of pseudonymous re-gendering, as a strategy for exciting audience interest. It makes an analytical comparison between leisure industries in the nineteenth and twenty-first centuries. It reveals a previously unknown aspect of Duval’s work (her use of a male pseudonym) and establishes its historic significance.
Dissemination (see Supplementary information above)
Drawing in Drag by Marie Duval substantiated an international programme of academic dissemination: authoring one academic book and one conference paper. It also substantiated an international programme of public dissemination: eight public exhibitions, one public event, one public lecture, seven public workshops and 3 items of media commentary.