Steven Spielberg's Adaptation of War Horse Essay examples

Steven Spielberg's Adaptation of War Horse Essay examples

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‘The media we use and the stories they tell help to make us who we are’.
- Mastronardi (89)
As the formative years of childhood lay the foundational stones of a kid’s future, the transformative energy of children’s literature is something that cannot be ignored. According to Perry Nodelman, literature for children is part of a colonization process that adults play on their own offspring in the same way the Western super powers controlled the Orient. They are spoken for, therefore silenced; their histories are written for them so that they might live accordingly. Didactic to the core, they contain the seeds of domination within, in order to secure the child who is outside the book. “In other words, we show children what we “know” about childhood in hopes that they will take our word for it and become like the fictional children we have invented – and therefore, less threatening to us” (Nodelman 32).
If the Puritans have started writing for children during the sixteenth century to teach them scriptures, so that they will be absolved from the sins they are born with, the focus has shifted now to a class and gender consciousness and giving an awareness of the power structures of the society they are to live. “Perhaps more than any other texts, they reflect society as it wishes to be, as it wishes to be seen, and as it unconsciously reveals itself to be” (Hunt 2). The stories they encounter in their earliest days provide them with caricatures, images and attitudes which in turn become a part of the adult identity they will carry and modify throughout their life.
The sector of children’s films too, like its mother genre, is not yet liberated from the politics of ideology. As entertainment industry is part of the consumerist world and i...


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...ertainment for the Young. London: BFI, 1995. Print.
Hunt, Peter. Ed. Children’s Literature: The Development of Criticism. London: Routledge, 1990. Print.
Huntemann, Nina and Michael Morgan. “Media and Identity Development.” Handbook of Children and the Media. Eds. Dorothy G. Singer and Jerome L. Singer. Los Angeles: SAGE, 2012. Print.
Hutcheon, Linda. A Theory of Adaptation. New York: Routledge, 2006. Print.
Mastronardi, M. “Adolescence and Media”. Journal of Language & Social Psychology 22.1 (2003): 83 – 93. SAGE. Web. 21 Mar. 2013.
Morpurgo, Michael. War Horse. London: Egmont, 2010. Print.
Nodelman, Perry. “The Other: Orientalism, Colonialism, and Children’s Literature”. Children’s Literature Association Quarterly 17.1 (1992): 29 – 35. Project Muse.Web. 5 May 2013.
War Horse. Dir. Steven Spielberg. Screenplay by Lee Hall and Richard Curtis. Touchstone, 2011. Film.

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