2017 | 18 |
Article title

Constructions of the Other in Polish Fantasy Literature

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Even though it often follows the heroic cycle of Campbell’s monomyth, because it is exomimetic, fantasy literature lends itself to the presentation of characters who are set apart from society by their nature, not just by their heroic status. These are characters such as wizards, who in fantasy are often elevated from the position of secondary characters they held in fairy tales to the stories’ protagonists. This makes fantasy works a good vessel for a discussion of the problems of otherness. As the genre evolves, the presentation of the Other becomes more complex. In modern works they are often portrayed as the Other on multiple levels. As readers have become more accustomed to Tolkienian wizards, dwarves, or rangers set apart from human society, the protagonists of modern fantasy stories are often made the Other to their own in-groups. The article presents a number of such characters from selected modern Polish fantasy novels and short story cycles.

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