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Hotet mot Narnia: Den andre i Aslans rike
Södertörn University, School of Culture and Education.
2015 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This essay seeks to investigate identity formation and the role of the oriental other, the Calormene, in C.S. Lewis popular children’s books, The Chronicles of Narnia, as well as the threat levelled at Narnia and what it constitutes.

The oriental other as a threatening corruption is a common image in European colonial discourse, therefore a brief summary on post-colonial theory and critique thereupon and a background on the occidental attitude towards the discursive Orient based mainly on Orientalism by Edward W. Said, as well as a short account of Emile Durkheims theory on social divisions of labour and identity formation in groups is provided in the first theoretical section, Images of the Other.

In the second section the Narnian identity and what it is composed of is examined. Here I argue that the Narnian identity is connected to an ideal and primordial English identity. This is shown primarily through the linking of Narnian nature and food with the English countryside and its “plain food”. Consequently, food in the Narnian space possesses a great power. The food of the Other corrupts while the hearty Narnian or English food holds the power to redeem those corrupted.

The third section is dedicated to the threat against Narnia. This is composed mainly of Calormenes and Witches, both of which are described to be ancient and whose evil, I argue, nonetheless is an eventual consequence of rational thinking and modernity.

In the fourth section the Calormene, the Other in Narnia, is examined. The Calormene society is inextricably linked to slavery, which is portrayed as the utmost consequence of rationality, and characterized by its spiritual poverty. This section also discusses how the Narnian can be corrupted and turned “Other”.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 35 p.
Keyword [en]
Children’s literature, fantasy, C.S. Lewis, Narnia, Orientalism, Identity formation, post-colonialism
Keyword [sv]
Barnböcker, fantasy, C.S. Lewis, Narnia, Orientalism, identitetskonstruktion, post-kolonialism
National Category
General Literature Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-29271OAI: diva2:896622
Subject / course
Comparative Literature
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2016-01-22 Created: 2016-01-21 Last updated: 2016-01-22Bibliographically approved

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