Deconstructing The Hero

Overview

This book sets out to explore the structure and meanings within the most popular of all literary genres - the adventure story. Deconstructing the Hero offers analytical readings of some of the most widely read adventure stories such as Treasure Island , the James Bond stories and Star Wars. The book describes how adventure stories are influential in shaping children's perception and establishing values.
When many of these stories define non-white, non-European people as ...

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Overview

This book sets out to explore the structure and meanings within the most popular of all literary genres - the adventure story. Deconstructing the Hero offers analytical readings of some of the most widely read adventure stories such as Treasure Island , the James Bond stories and Star Wars. The book describes how adventure stories are influential in shaping children's perception and establishing values.
When many of these stories define non-white, non-European people as inferior, and women as marginal or incapable, we should be worried about what they are teaching our children to think. Margery Hourihan shows how teaching children to read books critically can help to prevent the establishment of negative attitudes, discourage aggression and promote values of emotion and creativity.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415141864
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 5/16/2005
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 264
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.55 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Introduction 1
1 The Story 9
The power of the myth 10
Dualism and binary oppositions 15
The hero's point of view 38
The linear journey 45
Closure 51
2 The Hero 58
Race 58
Class and mastery 62
Gender 68
Age 72
Relationships 76
Rationality 88
Action and violence 96
3 The Wild Things 107
Dragons 111
Wolves and other beasts 118
Savages: 'human beasts' 129
Pirates, criminals and spies: 'white savages' 144
Ogres, darkness and shadows 151
4 The Women 156
Marginality and inferiorization 156
Mothers 161
Goddesses, fairy godmothers and others 167
Witches and bitches 174
Brides 193
Relationships 200
5 Rewriting the Story 203
Subverting the dualisms: gender 206
Subverting the dualisms: public and private space 216
Subverting the dualisms: civilization and wilderness 219
Denying dualism 224
Changing the point of view 228
Conclusions 233
Bibliography 236
Index 246
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