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ERIC Number: EJ1069240
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1938-0399
Broomsticks Flying in Circles: Playing with Narrative in Eleanor Estes's "The Witch Family"
Gargano, Elizabeth
American Journal of Play, v2 n4 p436-451 Spr 2010
The author contends that reading some narratives of make-believe can become for many children the ultimate form of fantasy play, providing them with a sense of control absent in their real world. She employs terms from French structuralist critic Gérard Genette, from Austrian child psychologist Bruno Bettelheim, and from English pediatrician D. W. Winnicott, to discuss Eleanor Estes's classic 1960s children's novel "The Witch Family." The author shows how the embedded stories of the work engage its young readers in narrative games and offers them a complex picture of children at play, one they recognize and enjoy. She contends that young readers come not only to relish the structurally transgressive manipulations of the story but that, because they do so, they are better able to face the world at large. As children learn to handle the monsters and witches of Estes's narrative fantasy, they learn to cope with the doubts and worries of childhood itself, and this proves key to the book's longevity and continued popularity.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A