The influence of Shahrazad, the female “hakawati” of the Arabian Nights, on Victorian children’s literatureShow full item record
|Title||The influence of Shahrazad, the female “hakawati” of the Arabian Nights, on Victorian children’s literature|
|Author||Shaaban, Dana Aicha|
|Abstract||This project explores the influence of The Arabian Nights on British children’s literature in the long nineteenth century. Specifically, it uses The Arabian Nights as a lens to view and understand Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865), Frances Hodgson Burnett’s A Little Princess (1905), and Charles Dickens’s David Copperfield (1850) differently, offering an alternate perspective on British childhood and what it meant to be British at the time. The fog of Victorian cultural norms casts a shadow that masks the impact of empire and colonization on British literature and culture. Using the lens of The Arabian Nights to clear part of the fog, this study brings to the forefront liminal characters, thematic content, and narrative techniques that have been borrowed and appropriated from this influential text. Engaging with two fields, British literature of the long nineteenth century and Golden Age children’s literature, this project also answers the call to “undiscipline” Victorian studies and expand the field of children’s literature. Each chapter provides a contrapuntal reading of the above novels, expanding on Said’s method by establishing a direct connection between the British protagonists and Shahrazad and Shahrayar, the main characters of the frame tale. In doing so, these readings decenter whiteness in the novels and amplify the roles of liminal characters who contribute to the identity development of Alice, Sara, and David, the respective protagonists of the Golden Age novels studied in this dissertation.|
|Advisor||Hughes, Linda K.
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- Doctoral Dissertations 
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