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As these eleven dark and wild stories demonstrate, fairy tales by Victorian women constitute a distinct literary tradition, one startlingly subversive of the society that fostered it. From Anne Thackeray Ritchie's adaptations of "The Sleeping Beauty in the Wood" to Christina Rossetti's unsettling antifantasies in Speaking Likenesses, these are breathtaking acts of imaginative freedom, by turns amusing, charming, and disturbing. Besides their social and historical implications, they are extraordinary stories, full of strange delights for readers of any age.
"Forbidden Journeys is not only a darkly entertaining book to read for the fantasies and anti-fantasies told, but also is a significant contribution to nineteenth-century cultural history, and especially feminist studies."—United Press International
"A service to feminists, to Victorian Studies, to children's literature and to children."—Beverly Lyon Clark, Women's Review of Books
"These are stories to laugh over, cheer at, celebrate, and wince at. . . . Forbidden Journeys is a welcome reminder that rebellion was still possible, and the editors' intelligent and fascinating commentary reveals ways in which these stories defied the Victorian patriarchy."—Allyson F. McGill, Belles Lettres
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Nina Auerbach is professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania. U. C. Knoepflmacher is professor of English at Princeton University.
A handful of women, writing ca. 1867-79, used the plot of a girl's journey to forbidding places as a vehicle to expand the genre of children's literature into some unexpected emotional areas. Jean Ingelow, Christina Rossetti, Anne Thackerary Ritchie, Maria Molesworth, Juliana Horatia Ewing, and Frances Burnett (with Edith Nesbit a few years later) contribute one or two tales each (never duplicating Jack Zipes's or Michael Partick Hearn's recent anthologizing). The collection counters any stereotype of Victorian women as saccharine. Sharp-eyed and sharp-edged, angry and ironic, subversive enough even for Alison Lurie, these tales range from mild modern reworkings of fairy tale to idiosyncratic fantasy touched by the bizarre or burlesque to Rossetti's perverse anti-fantasy. Five essays provide context and well-argued criticism; concise biographies and selected bibliographies are appended. For informed readers.
- Patricia Dooley, Univ. of Washington Lib. Sch., Seattle
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description University Of Chicago Press, 1992. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0226032035
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