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Relentless Progress: The Reconfiguration of Children's Literature, Fairy Tales, and Storytelling

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Can fairy tales subvert consumerism? Can fantasy and children's literature counter the homogenizing influence of globalization? Can storytellers retain their authenticity in the age of consumerism? These are some of the critical questions raised by Jack Zipes, the celebrated scholar of fairy tales and children's literature. In this book, Zipes argues that, despite a dangerous reconfiguration of children as consumers in the civilizing process, children's literature, fairy tales, and storytelling possess a uniquely...
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Producing Children's Culture: The Reconfiguration of Children's Literature, Fairy Tales, and Storytelling

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Overview

Can fairy tales subvert consumerism? Can fantasy and children's literature counter the homogenizing influence of globalization? Can storytellers retain their authenticity in the age of consumerism? These are some of the critical questions raised by Jack Zipes, the celebrated scholar of fairy tales and children's literature. In this book, Zipes argues that, despite a dangerous reconfiguration of children as consumers in the civilizing process, children's literature, fairy tales, and storytelling possess a uniquely powerful (even fantastic) capacity to resist the "relentless progress" of negative trends in culture. He also argues that these tales and stories may lose their power if they are too diluted by commercialism and merchandising.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Many of [the] short essays are quite fascinating.' - Art and Christianity
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415990646
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 11/26/2008
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Jack Zipes is Professor of German at the University of Minnesota. An acclaimed translator and scholar of children's literature and culture, his most recent books include The Collected Sicilian Folk and Fairy Tales of Giuseppe Pitré, Why Fairy Tales Stick, Hans Christian Andersen: The Misunderstood Storyteller, Beautiful Angiola, and The Robber with the Witch's Head, all published by Routledge.

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Table of Contents

Preface ix

Acknowledgments xiii

Prologue xiv

1 The Reconfiguration of Children and Children's Literature in the Culture Industry 1

2 Misreading Children and the Fate of the Book 27

3 Why Fantasy Matters Too Much 45

4 The Multicultural Contradictions of International Children's Literature: Three Complaints and Three Wishes 69

5 What Makes a Repulsive Frog So Appealing: Applying Memetics to Folk and Fairy Tales 87

6 And Nobody Lived Happily Ever After: The Feminist Fairy Tale after Forty Years of Fighting for Survival 121

7 Storytelling as Spectacle in the Globalized World 141

Notes 157

Bibliography 167

Index 183

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