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Betraying Reality: Defamiliarization’s Effect on Fantasy Worlds


Marius Conkan
Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania
mariusconkan@yahoo.com.sg

 

 

Betraying Reality: Defamiliarization’s Effect on Fantasy Worlds

 

 

Abstract: This study investigates the relationship between reality and fantasy worlds by applying the concept of defamiliarization, seen as a defining element for the construction of the marvellous imaginary. Using Viktor Shklovsky’s and Darko Suvin’s theories as a starting point, my paper focuses on the manner in which a completely new perception of space is created through the transfer of known and possible reality onto secondary universes. Fantasy constantly betrays and reconfigures images attached to reality, aiming at building ontologically valid and autonomous worlds. These universes grant new meanings to reality and even help recuperate lost or forgotten ones. Defamiliarization, as a key ingredient, delivers the nature of fantasy worlds, which I will explore by using relevant findings in the study of the utopian genre. 

Keywords: Fantasy worlds; Defamiliarization; Degrees of Defamiliarization; Tzvetan Todorov; Darko Suvin; Utopian Genre; Imaginary Geography; Portals.

 

Is fantasy merely a product of combinatorialist imagination? Do secondary worlds consist of elements that combine, on a basic level, possible images of reality? Despite being able to find roots for the marvellous imaginary in combinatorialism, my analysis[1] on the enchanted wardrobe, through which Lucy enters Narnia, contains sufficient arguments in favour of the idea that fantasy worlds are the result of a complex process creating imaginary objects and situations (such an imaginary object is the portal). Toma Pavel criticizes the “firm commitment to reality”[2] of combinatorialism stating that:  

 

The ontology of fictional worlds is not by neccessity combinatorialist, even if various periods or trends have adopted a conspicuous combinatorialist stand: chimerae were indeed reducible to real elements, just as Archimboldo’s portraits decompose into fruit and vegetables; and do not eighteenth- and nineteenth-century realist novels programmatically limit their ontology to kinds of beings belonging to the actualworld? But even these examples show thar more complex varieties of combinatorialism go beyond space-time points and use as building blocks natural kinds, social types and roles, and so on. Obviously, space-time points are insufficient for realist and irrealist fiction alike.[3]

 

To take the combinatorialist stand means to interpret fantasy worlds as a simple rearrangement of images that have a real background and seeing reality as the sole reference point for fictional worlds of this kind. But the premise of theories on the morphology of fantasy worlds should attempt to avoid a clear-cut opposition between reality and fiction and, therefore, it represents the starting point of my endeavour. If the portal designates the area in which contradictions between the primary (real) world and the secondary (marvellous) world are dismantled, then any theoretical attempt to establish a dominance of the real world over the fictional world comes at a dead end mostly due to the fact that reality itself is a possible world in the universe of possible worlds. Such an approach distances itself from the classical logic of non-contradiction and engages with quantum logics and its principles. Several researchers have studied fantasy applying the opposition between the actual and the secondary world. But ideas like those of Nelson Goodman[4] and Hilary Putnam,[5] based on ontological relativism, postulate a multiverse of possible worlds.[6] Moreover, a similar perspective can be found at the core of Lubomír Doležel’s Heterocosmica,[7] in which the semantics of fictional worlds are detailed and explained.

Secondary worlds are not erected through a simple game of combinations as this would, yet again, showcase reality as the sole reference point and end any efforts to discuss fantasy through the possible worlds’ theory. A consistent answer to the question of how fantasy worlds are created can be found in defamiliarization, despite the fact that from a fictional point of view these worlds emerge through narrative modalities as described by Doležel. A necessary step in my analysis will consist of revisiting the origins of the term defamiliarization and testing its applicability on fantasy literature. 

In his essay “Art as Technique,”[8] Viktor Shklovsky coins the terms practical and poetic language, in order to reveal his concept of ostranenie (defamiliarization). If practical language places, in a metonymical manner, objects into categories, poetic language will recreate, through metaphors, the real structure/wrapping of objects, aiming at transmitting an intense aesthetic experience. The fine line linking the two language types and, implicitly, imaginary categories is perception, as “the purpose of art is to impart the sensation of things as they are perceived and not as they are known.”[9] In the case of practical language we are dealing with an automatism of perception, while poetic/artistic language increases the duration and the difficulties of perception, which will infuse the text (and can even become of aesthetic value in itself).[10] At this point we can suggest that Shklovsky managed to reformulate, in a more complex manner, Samuel Coleridge’s definition of the relationship between primary and secondary imagination in his work Biographia Literaria.[11] Primary imagination is closely connected to an initial perception of objects and will enable their inclusion into the known world. But secondary imagination will rearrange what senses usually deliver by placing objects in a different ontological regime. In order to clarify the junction between immediate and artistic perception, Shklovsky introduces the concept of defamiliarization. This term is seen as a technique through which familiar objects are described in an unfamiliar manner or as how they are seen on a first sight. Defamiliarization implies a new perception of objects that are placed in a different semantic regime and overhaul the automatism of perception.

Shklovsky makes use of defamiliarization in order to explain how literary language can function in general and uses Tolstoi’s works to illustrate this. Defamiliarization can also describe how portals obtrude and could even help exploring fantasy literature. In fact defamiliarization is, in the case of fantasy, a complex process of edifying the marvellous and pseudo-mythical imaginary. Furthermore, defamiliarization transforms the primary (possible) world into a secondary world placed on a higher ontological level. 

The concept of defamiliarization has a long history. Bertolt Brecht and Darko Suvin[12] have engaged with the term and we can find echoes of the notion in Jaques Deridda’s[13] différance. Brecht uses defamiliarization in theater as “Verfremdungseffekt” or the effect of alienation. Moreover,

 

Brecht had adapted the Formalists’ idea to theatre, proposing that estrangement should be an explicitly political act, which draws the audience’s attention to the fact that the spectacle they are witnessing is an illusion, stimulating the crowd to become aware of their situation as passive receivers, an awareness they might then extend to reflection about their similar situation in the manipulated illusion-world of bourgeois domination.[14]

 

In science fiction, Darko Suvin (following Viktor Shklovsky and Bertolt Brecht) deals with two major concepts that have found a place in literary theory: novum and cognitive estrangement. Novum is for Darko Suvin the similarity between real-life science innovations and the ones writers of science fiction literature produce in their works and “thus, if the novum is the necessary condition of’ SF (differentiating it from naturalistic fiction), the validation of the novelty by scientifically methodical cognition into which the reader is inexorably led is the sufficient condition for sf.”[15] How does Darko Suvin connect cognitive estrangement to novum? As science fiction is “a literary genre whose necessary and sufficient conditions are the presence and interaction of estrangement and cognition, and whose main formal device is an imaginative framework alternative to the author’s empirical environment,”[16] cognitive estrangement represents the manner in which the reader perceives and interiorizes the innovative content of such narrations. He or she will, therefore, question and shed new light upon images of familiar reality. 

Both Bertolt Brecht and Darko Suvin define defamiliarization according to rational and scientific principles.[17] But fantasy consists par excellence of a magical imaginary and “der Verfremdungseffekt” and cognitive estrangement cannot serve as proper tools for investigating secondary worlds of miraculous nature. Despite the fact that some researchers have scarcely mentioned defamiliarization as an effect of fantasy and discussed how “our own world is viewed through the distorting lens of the magical world which makes us see it in a new light,”[18] the full potential of this concept has not yet been tested on fantasy, as it was the case with Suvin’s cognitive estrangement and its impact on the interpretation of science fiction. What kind of novum do secondary (magical) worlds contain and how does defamiliarization operate in building such worlds?

Defamiliarization signalizes an essential mutation in the perception of possible objects, as they are isolated and extracted from known reality in order to become objects of magical nature. This shift aims, first and foremost, at the way in which the automatic perception of a possible object is replaced by a new perception. The latter will confer the object never before seen or inexistent qualities. Being perceived in an unfamiliar manner and seen/known for the first time, the possible object is inserted into a different regime of the imaginary (unreal, magical and mythical, all traits of fantasy).

A rather handy example can be found in the toffee tree encountered in The Magician’s Nephew by C. S. Lewis. In their journey towards the terrestrial paradise, Polly and Digory plant toffees and, to their surprise, a toffee tree will grow. We are dealing with a fine process of defamiliarization through which the significance of a tree is “genetically” modified. Moreover, narrating a fact that is virtually impossible in the logic of reality becomes, paradoxically, coherent in the same logic. Out of seeds can grow trees and C. S. Lewis defamiliarizes this process enabling the unfamiliar perception and a first encounter with such a fact. The author merges two incompatible objects in reality (the tree and the toffee) and creates the magical toffee tree. The existence of the latter in the logic of reality is impossible, but at the same time, it is coherent in the same logic. Toffees become seeds and they will grow into a toffee tree. It’s as simple as that.

My toffee tree example showcases how defamiliarization does not operate in fantasy with just one possible object, as it is the case in realist prose. On the contrary, in the emergence of the magical and mythical imaginary there are always two objects that will function as an autonomous imaginary element. In this regard, the process of defamiliarization occurs simultaneously for both elements and is followed by a reciprocal exchange of meanings between the two. Such a semantic transfer is mediated by the perception of both objects and their step-by-step alteration, until both elements engulf the other one’s nature. In other words, one element receives the significance of the other one and will be seen/known as the other one, whilst the traits of the second object are rendered in the same manner. The autonomous imaginary object, created through intertwining two possible objects, is perceived as complete on the level of the secondary world. This is how the sense of wonder comes to light as a third perception, clearly attached to the imaginary object and created through the transfer of meanings and qualities of two objects. Let’s take Peter Pan’s shadow and its defamiliarization. In J.M Barrie’s book, Mrs. Darling sees Peter’s shadow as a cloth to be folded and acts accordingly.

 

The Degrees of Defamiliarization

 

The sense of wonder is the most important result of defamiliarization and it is essential for the relationship between the reader and the secondary world created by the fantast, as it is built through the extraction of possible objects out of their real categories and their rearrangement as imaginary elements. The sense of wonder measures the distance between an initial perception of possible objects and their status on the level of secondary worlds, as they are in fact transformed by the inner laws of fantasy fiction. Defamiliarization gradually cancels the primary nature of objects and modifies the reader’s perception, by enabling a completely new perception. This could help explain how readers and viewers alike display a certain fascination for fantasy novels and movies. Reality is defamiliarized to such a degree that all what is common, through gradual transformations, becomes a secondary world. Perceiving the latter triggers the sense of wonder. Moreover, if we were to look at the secondary world as a whole, it becomes clear that it is the product of an extensive process of defamiliarization, inspired by the contemporary reality of the fantasts. In The Lord of The Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia, both J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis defamiliarize a world devastated and crippled by World War II. This procedure increases the distance between the immediate perception of this world and what it stands for in the imaginary realm. Both authors build metaphorical totalitarian regimes (the White Witch’s eternal winter in Narnia, Middle Earth threatened by Sauron) and manage to depict such clashes in a never before seen/experienced manner. Tolkien and Lewis transfer a post-war reality onto symbolical landscapes filled with moral and Christian values. This will, in the end, enable the reader to perceive totalitarianism and its propagating evil in a totally new perspective. Lewis Carroll, on the other hand, defamiliarizes in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland schizophrenia, enabling it to become the negative reason in Wonderland, but also a functional principle for reassembling backwards known reality. This is one of the clearest examples of how defamiliarization operates in fantasy, as the author modifies and reduces everything the reader finds familiar to the absurd, mostly by overturning laws of physics and logic. 

The imaginary world, from this standpoint, is the ultimate product of defamiliarizing everything normal, known and possible. That is why critics, who often see in fantasy a territory of the impossible and set a clear contradiction between reality and the secondary world, encounter theoretical limits mostly due to bracketing ties between the imaginary construction of reality and that of the secondary world. Shklovsky explores in his essay how Tolstoi, in realist prose, is a master of defamiliarization, as he subtly transforms the perception on common situations and their narratives. There is a difference between Tolstoi’s technique and the one fantasts use in their works: the degree of defamiliarization in fantasy reaches its maximum. A first degree of defamiliarization is found in realist fiction, as it recreates veridical stories and reality’s illusion. Following this line of argumentation, the second degree of defamiliarization is represented by fantastic fiction, mostly due to the fact that it depicts fine ruptures of the realist imaginary. The distance between the perception of reality and of the fictional world increases by far in science fiction. Societies and worlds of the future emerge mostly due to technological progress and, despite being probable and possible imaginary worlds, they drift away from the reader’s known reality. Worlds of science fiction are the result of a third degree of defamiliarization, similar to Darko Suvin’s[19] concept of cognitive estrangement. These levels of defamiliarization depend on how known objects and situations are described to the reader in an unfamiliar manner, in order to be perceived as such. Hence, not only distancing from reality as a reference point is relevant in this equation, but also how the perception of reality is gradually altered and how reality itself is transformed through the construction of fictional worlds. That is why the fourth degree of defamiliarization can be found in fantasy, as it entirely transforms the imaginary of reality. Fantasts create fictional worlds that the reader sees as true, just as he or she believes in reality. Such an effect is obtained through acute defamiliarization of what is normally perceived as real and common and by enabling distance between the perception of possible and imagined objects, starting with the possible ones. The difference between fantasy and realist fiction lays in the degree it defamiliarizes reality. Therefore, fantasy does not stand on the opposite side of reality, as known by the reader, but it passes through several stages of defamiliarization in order to install a secondary world. Such secondary worlds return to reality and charge it with new significance, while also dismantling the automatism of perception regarding the familiar and the known.

 

Fantasy Worlds through the Lens of the Imaginary Geography

 

Although defamiliarization is the main operator in the assembly line of imaginary characters, objects and situations, it also indicates the manner in which these worlds emerge, but without pointing to their nature. The degree of  defamiliarization marks, first and foremost, a transfer of significances and perception, it establishes the distance through which images are understood and perceived, in order to give birth to a completely new perspective. A wardrobe taken from its real category, described in an unfamiliar manner and transformed into a portal towards another realm, not only changes how wardrobes can be seen, but it also influences the reader’s vision upon what lays beyond the edges of reality and behind the wardrobe. Through Wonderland, Neverland, Narnia and Fantasia, authors mythify the known world, send the reader on a quest, change his or her perception on familiar elements of life and offer thresholds through which one can endlessly travel back and forth in order to revive the world he or she inhabits. This pathway of perception, from material to an ethereal world, releases familiar images from the blockage of the real. It would explain the fantasy complex, defined by Ruxandra Cesereanu in her study “The Fantasy Complex. Close Reading: The Hobbit & The Lord of the Rings[20] as the readers’/characters’ attachment and tendency towards story-telling and preference for secondary worlds. Defamiliarization illustrates how fantasy fiction is created, but could also detail its effects on the reader (also triggered by the fantasy complex). Yet again, it does not address the structure of imaginary spaces. The latter can be interpreted either through methods found in the imaginary geography, or through models found in theories on possible worlds and fiction. The first method would reveal the nature of fantasy worlds and the spatial typologies they display, and the latter can shed new light on how these worlds come to life. 

The imaginary geography uses different methods than the ones found in humanistic geography. The key issues are places (topoi) seen as fictional spatial-temporalities that are directly linked to their creator’s (writers’) real world. Among such imaginary places we find antiutopias, dystopias, eutopias and utopias, each being characterized by certain traits Corin Braga[21] has established. These fictional territories are not always clearly separable and can be interpreted in various ways. In short, dystopias and eutopias isolate negative and positive elements from society and transfer them from the primary world onto the secondary world. They showcase a possible and probable version of society in which the authors live. Antiutopias and utopias, on the other hand, invert positive and negative elements that exist in society, in order to depict impossible and improbable worlds. Such spaces display supernatural and miraculous images, as they represent pure dimensions of the utopian genre. This classification of places comes close to Tzvetan Todorov’s[22] trichotomy in which the uncanny, the fantastic and the marvellous are defined, yet such a trichotomy does not serve Corin Braga as a theoretical model. The uncanny, the fantastic and the miraculous can be found in a pure state, but they usually comprise of binary structures. For example, the fantastic regards the feeling of hesitation between accepting the miraculous and its rational decryption, efforts that lead to the category of the uncanny. If we were to merge Corin Braga’s classification of utopian genres with the three aesthetic categories developed by Todorov, then utopias and antiutopias are marvellous, while eutopias and dystopias are uncanny. At the centre lays the reader’s hesitation (triggered by the fantastic) that enables him or her to oscillate between utopia and eutopia, but also between antiutopia and dystopia. Finding rational explanation for the existence of a positive or negative place, perceiving it as possible and probable, turns it into an uncanny place or a eutopia and dystopia. However, if the imaginary place is accepted as irrational and perceived as highly improbable and impossible, we are dealing with a marvellous place, a utopia or an antiutopia. 

How defamiliarization operates in the trichotomy of the uncanny-fantastic-marvellous and in the utopian genres is extremely important and must not be ignored. The reader’s hesitation between accepting the marvellous and interpreting it as the uncanny is the effect of the second degree of reality’s defamiliarization, as hesitation becomes the perception of the fantastic linking the two categories. If the narrative events are explained in rational terms and understood, on the level of the imaginary, as uncanny, then we are dealing with a third degree of defamiliarization. The forth degree of defamiliarization and the most intense one refers to the reader’s acceptance of the marvellous without any attempts to find rational explanations. There is a fine parallel between the defamiliarization’s effects found in Todorov’s trichotomy and the ones visible in the texture and perception of positive and negative spaces. These are not part of realist fictions, belonging to the first degree of defamiliarization, nor of fantastic ones attached to the second degree of defamiliarization. The reader’s hesitation comes, in this case, also from the fact that these space do not fit per se in the four categories of the utopian genre. Moreover, hesitation indicates a certain distance from reality and characterizes the effect of the second degree of defamiliarizaton. Revealing the imaginary place, as possible and probable through rational assertion and implicitly pinpointing to dystopia or eutopia, releases the uncanny and is the effect of a third degree of defamiliarization. If the negative or positive place is accepted as marvellous, being impossible and improbable, then we are dealing with an antiutopia or utopia. This represents the effect of the fourth stage of defamiliarization. Concepts like possible and probable, impossible and possible have not served my purpose, despite questioning how these categories engage with each other. Such manifestations can be silenced, as the degrees of defamiliarizing reality showcase their qualities. The reader does not necessary label utopia and antiutopia as impossible or improbable, but will rather look upon such realms through the lens of reality’s radical defamiliarization. Imaginary places do not contradict reality, but for the reader they protrude in a continuous and circular manner, as such places shed new light on reality. Furthermore, everything that is subject to defamiliarization is being interpreted from a perspective that pierces through the standard perception of reality.

Corin Braga’s and Tzvetan Todorov’s endeavours point to how secondary worlds in fantasy could be marvellous, utopian and antiutopian, as the effect of a fourth degree of defamiliarization. Yet, as J. R. R Tolkien[23] explains, the fantast recreates a secondary world in order to be perceived by readers just as real as the world they inhabit. According to Todorov’s trichotomy fantasy renders the miraculous due to their acceptance as autonomous places and because they are not questioned by rational thought. In my opinion, fantasy realms are not utopias or antiutopias, despite being subject to a fourth degree of defamiliarization. They do not encompass negative or positive elements of society, in spite of using metaphors for good and evil visible in the fantasts’ contemporary world. Such imaginary places do not openly scrutinize reality, but rather rewrite it as a palimpsest to the point in which reality will be transferred into alternative universes.  

Fantasy fictions display both negative and positive spaces engulfed by mythical conflicts. The secondary world is usually composed of an eutopia (a paradisiac space) and a dystopia (as the infernal space). Yet, neither eutopia, nor dystopia can be defined as imaginary places in classical terms. The definition of dystopia and eutopia refers to how such places metonymically convert society’s good and evil, in order to replace the negative and positive images in the real world with their heightened effects. However, fantasy fiction uses metaphors of good and evil and reveals them as protective magicians (Gandalf) or wicked witches (Jadis). Metonymy and metaphors are the key items differentiating dystopias and eutopias, in their classical definition, from fantasy worlds. Despite being supernatural and the effect of the fourth degree of defamiliarization, fantasy worlds (and their imaginary) do not receive the status of utopias and antiutopias. Such worlds merely select negative and positive elements from society in order to illustrate them in a mythical, hyperbolical and metaphorical manner. Fantasy eutopias and dystopias (the attached fantasy term is necessary) can be considered subgenres of standard eutopias and dystopias. Such conventional spaces are encountered in science fiction and realist prose that depict better or, on the contrary, politically and socially absurd versions of worlds the writers inhabit. An immersive fantasy fiction leads the reader into a secondary world where eutopias and dystopias are purely metaphorical and reflect a mythical conflict based on symbols of good and evil present in real societies.

In portal-quest fantasy,[24] imaginary spaces have slightly different traits, as the portal linking a primary world to a secondary world changes their perception. The primary world is configured in a realist manner in most portal-quest novel and portrays a familiar space for reader and characters alike. The portal defamiliarizes this space and transfers it onto an imaginary world consisting of metaphorical eutopias and dystopias that are for both readers and characters an initiation. Such eutopias and dystopias are the consequences of mythifying good and evil in the primary world. Characters, after their initiation and the recreation of their identity, return to the primary world, but only after they confront their inner fears/contradictions. Hence, the portal not only delimitates and links the two universes (one familiar and the other one a product of defamiliarization), but turns into the proper tool for interpreting the traits and functions of positive and negative spaces in portal-quest fictions. Portals carry good and evil onto a mythical level, with the purpose of solving conflicts existing in the primary world. Being perceived as unfamiliar, images of good and evil are understood in their depth, they are questioned from a completely new perspective and will reconfigure the ontic dimension of characters entering the fantasy world. Having defamiliarization as a key process in building the nature of fiction, fantasy constantly betrays and reconfigures images attached to reality. It aims to create ontologically valid and autonomous world that grant new meanings to reality and even help recuperate lost or forgotten ones.

 

This work was supported by a grant of the Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research, CNCS – UEFISCDI, project number PN-II-ID-PCE-2011-3-0061.

 

Notes




[1] See Marius Conkan, “On the Nature of Portals in Fantasy Literature”, Caietele Echinox, vol. 26/2014, pp. 105-113.

[2] Thomas G. Pavel, Fictional Worlds, Cambridge, Harvard University Press, 1986, p. 95.

[3] Ibidem, p. 96.

[4] Nelson Goodman, Ways of Worldmaking, Indianapolis, Hackett Publishing Company, 1985.

[5] Hilary Putnam, “Is there still anything to say about reality and truth?”, in Peter J. McCormick (ed.), Starmaking. Realism, Anti-Realism, and Irrealism,Cambridge, The MIT Press, 1996.

[6] See Corin Braga, “Mondes fictionnels : utopie, science-fiction, fantasy”, Caietele Echinox, vol. 26/2014, pp. 38-40. 

[7] Lubomír Doležel, Heterocosmica: Fiction and Possible World, Baltimore and London, The John Hopkins University Press, 1998.

[8] Viktor Shklovsky, “Art as Technique”, in David H. Richter (ed.), The Critical Tradition: Classic Texts and Contemporary Trends, Boston, New York, Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2006, pp. 775-784.

[9] Ibidem, p. 778.

[10] Ibidem, Viktor Shklovsky defines the relationship between perception and poetic language: “The technique of art is to make objects ’unfamiliar’, to make forms difficult, to increase the difficulty and length of perception because the process of perception is an aesthetic end in itself and must be prolonged. Art is a way of experiencing the artfulness of an object; the object is not important.

[11] Samuel Coleridge, Biographia Literaria, The Project Gutenberg EBook, 2004.

[12] Darko Suvin, Metamorphoses of Science Fiction, New Haven, Yale University Press, 1979.

[13] Jacques Derrida, Scriitura şi diferenţa, trans. Bogdan Ghiu and Dumitru Ţepeneag, preface by Radu Toma, Bucureşti, Editura Univers, 1998.

[14] Edward James and Farah Mendlesohn (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to Science Fiction, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2003, p. 118.

[15] Darko Suvin, op. cit., pp. 65-66.

[16] Ibidem, pp. 7-8.

[17] See Edward James and Farah Mendlesohn (eds.), op. cit., p. 118: “The specific difference between sf and other estranging genres, such as fantasy, is that sf’s displacements must be logically consistent and methodical; in fact, they must be scientific to the extent that they imitate, reinforce and illuminate the process of scientific cognition.”

[18] Jon Helgason, Sara Kärrholm and Ann Steiner (eds.) Hype: Bestsellers and Literary Culture, Lund, Nordic Academic Press, 2014, p. 122.

[19] Darko Suvin, Metamorphoses of Science Fiction, ed. cit.

[20] Ruxandra Cesereanu, “The Fantasy Complex. Close Reading: The Hobbit & The Lord of the Rings”, Caietele Echinox, vol. 26/2014, pp. 83-98.

[21] Corin Braga, “Lumi ficționale. O taxinomie a genului utopic”, in Corin Braga (ed.), Morfologia lumilor posibile: utopie, antiutopie, Science-Fiction, fantasy, Bucharest, Tracus Arte, 2015, pp. 13-62.

[22] Tzvetan Todorov, Introduction à la littérature fantastique, Paris, Éditions du Seuil, 1970.

[23] J. R. R. Tolkien, “On Fairy-Stories”, Web: http://www.rivendellcommunity.org/Formation/Tolkien_On_Fairy_Stories.pdf, accessed on 20. 06. 2016.

[24] Farah Mendlesohn, Rhetorics of Fantasy, Middletown, Wesleyan University Press, 2008.

 
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