Tag Archives: fantasy

Good Political Leadership According to Narnia

I made the statement almost by accident to some of my grad students: Narnia has a pretty sophisticated political philosophy, especially when you consider it is written for children. As soon as I said it, I knew it to be … Continue reading

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Little Rooms of Imagination with Madeleine L’Engle and C.S. Lewis (Friday Feature)

I tell my students often enough to read the fore-matter in their textbooks. “That’s where the good stuff is,” I argue. “That’s where the author shares his or her vision for writing.” Now, I suspect that students rarely heed my … Continue reading

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Madeleine L’Engle’s Remarkable Accomplishment in The Wrinkle in Time

By all accounts, the young Madeleine L’Engle did everything wrong. First, she was a woman writing in a man’s genre in the 1950s and 1960s—and writing soft SF under a feminine name without the ambiguity of initials to hide behind. … Continue reading

Posted in Fictional Worlds, Reflections, Reviews, Thoughtful Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Philip Pullman as a Reader of C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien

Philip Pullman is for me a hot-and-cold writer who, fortunately, usually leads with heat. His accomplishment in drawing modern fantasy readers into the worlds of Milton and Dante with the His Dark Materials trilogy is an important one. Lyra in The Golden … Continue reading

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“A Novelist’s Business is Lying”: A Farewell to Ursula K. Le Guin (1929-2018)

I have just heard that Ursula K. Le Guin has passed away. I could be humble about my opinion, but I want to impress upon you that she is one of our very greatest imaginative writers of the last 50 … Continue reading

Posted in Fictional Worlds, On Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

A History of Magic with J. K. Rowling (A New BBC Documentary)

Just in time for Hallowe’en, and in concert with the British Library’s “Harry Potter: A History of Magic” exhibit, BBC has produced an hour-long Potterlicious documentary. I saw this film on Twitter yesterday, and thought it was worth sharing–and not … Continue reading

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Wormwood Reborn? A Screwtapian Look at The Gates by John Connolly (A Little Hallowe’en Demonic Lit)

One of the great perks as a university teacher is that I am constantly in conversation with students about good books. While this occasionally gets me into conversations about Twilight (which I did read, but only with great commitment to my … Continue reading

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