David Rudd’s ‘defence’ of the work of Enid Blyton Essay

David Rudd’s ‘defence’ of the work of Enid Blyton Essay

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Critics view the books by Pullman and Ransom as examples of literary excellence. In order to evaluate this opinion it is necessary to discuss what aspects contribute to a good book and how these books illustrate them. The American Library Associate (ALA) uses the term eduo-brow to mean the middle ground of literature with an educational emphasis. This emphasis is on increasing the experiences of the reader through varied language, dynamic themes, rounded characterisation and comprehensive plots. The critics favour works that involve the reader in a non-passive manner to gain insights into universal aspects of human existence like love, identity, revenge, sexuality and betrayal.
Pullman has written a basic adventure story laced with multiple themes, metaphors and ideas. He uses intertextuality to enrich his text and enhance his ideas and arguments. His main critique is the theology surrounding Fall literature where experience replaces innocence. He compares this idea with the journey of his main female protagonists from an innocent childhood to the knowledgeable complexities of adulthood. Pullman questions the role of obedience in his novels and encourages the reader through the text to question and analyse in order to form their own opinions. Whereas Ransom has some intertextuality in his novel, his main strength is realism and practicality while seamlessly intertwining fantasy. He places the children at the centre of the story giving them a voice through focalisation with true to life dialogue. The reader interacts with the text through a powerful sense of place and detailed descriptions of practicalities like sailing.
In contrast, according to Rudd, critics view Blyton’s books as the embodiment of bad literature. Rudd argue...


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...sources with realistic setting into extended imaginative play is observable in children’s play. The support of the adults, providing the necessities for the adventure, allows the protagonists to play in a safe and secure environment. In this case, the mother also supports the fantasy and imaginative play by becoming Queen Beth and a native. The emergence of the child’s voice through focalisation and naturalistic dialogue creates a child’s viewpoint. Therefore, the other characters are on the periphery of this viewpoint creating a democratic feel to the text. This reflects children’s observable attitudes to others. Ransom not only characterises children’s play but also reflect the attitudes and values of his own world. The heavily gender specific roles of the children and minimal parental supervision is horrific by values of today’s inclusive and diverse society.


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