The use of fantasy within literature is a powerful vehicle for expressing and analyzing many human emotions. In effect, the term “reality” merely helps to differentiate a least common denominator with the experiences that most individuals count as normal…
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Comparation of the use of fantasy in Tom's Midnight Garden and The Secret Garden
This not only has to do with the fact that different authors are responsible for these respective works; it also has to do with the differential in time between when these books were penned and the growth and development of the genre in which they fall.1 Whereas an absolute and/or concrete definition of fantasy is somewhat impossible to define with regards to children’s literature, many commonalities are expressed by the genre and help to define it. These are as follows: the utilization of many form and narrative techniques, the heightened use of symbolism, and the focus upon the language to create mystique, setting, and sense of time that other functions or genres might otherwise struggle with. Fantasy within children’s literature, although a similar issue, is in fact somewhat different and more nuanced; due in part to the fact that it can be separated into two distinct time periods – the first and second golden age. The first golden age necessarily refers to the period of the late 19th and early 20th century; whereas the second golden period refers to the period of time starting in the mid 20th century and extending nearly until the close of the 20th century. Naturally, for the novels in question, The Secret Garden falls into the first golden age; whereas Tom’s Midnight Garden falls into the second....
99. From a cursory analysis, the inclusion of the word “secret” in The Secret Garden or “midnight” in Tom’s Midnight Garden present something of an expectation for the implementation of fantasy as a means of bringing about a particular understanding.2 Once again, a non—nuanced approach is presented partly due to the fact that children’s literature is the focus and intended audience for which these respective novels are intended.3 Whereas this might be considered a cheap literary trick in some circles, the use of such terminology within the titles creates an expectation for fantasy and intrigue to define the subsequent pages and chapters of the novels in question. However, even though such an expectation exists, as the reader might expect, a clear level of differentiation exists between the level and use of fantasy that is leveraged and these two novels which are written nearly 50 years apart.4 With regards to The Secret Garden, a sense of fantasy is immediately conveyed to the reader due to the fact that a fantastical representation of an exotic life is presented to the reader. The protagonist, Mary Lennox, is defined as a girl who grew up in the lap of luxury and far off India.5 The description and definition of the luxuries and carefree lifestyle that she lived while there helps the reader to understand the sense of warning and mystique to which she greets the gray and uninviting steps of northern England. However, of all of the literary approaches that are utilized as a means of affecting a sense of fantasy within The Secret Garden, perhaps the most poignant and powerful is with regards to the religious imagery that is presented. Rather than merely attempting to evoke a sense of fantasy based
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