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ENH1990 - Introduction to Fantasy Narratives

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader: Rebecca DoRozario


Caulfield Second semester 2007 (Day)
Clayton Second semester 2007 (Day)


A study of the oral and literary traditions of myth, hero legend and fairy tale evident in modern fantasy narratives such as those by Rowling, Tolkien, Le Guin and Pullman, traditions which underpin much adult and children's literature. Students will be introduced to theoretical approaches which can help explain the shaping influence of traditional material in modern fantasy writing. The subject will consider the ways in which fantasy literature rewrites and appropriates mythic and legendary material for modern audiences, paying some attention to the ideological assumptions involved. There will be an opportunity for students to consider these topics in relation to their own creative writing.


It is intended that students undertaking this course should develop:

  1. an understanding of the historical association between oral narratives and fantasy literature.
  2. a critical understanding of some of the major thematic paradigms of fantasy literature.
  3. a introductory understanding of major cultural and psychoanalytic interpretations of myths, legendary and fairy tale material, and the connections such interpretations have with modern fantasy writing.
  4. an understanding of the ways in which fantasy literature rewrites mythic and legendary material and appropriates this material for modern audiences.
  5. an understanding of the ideological implications of cultural variance in the use of traditional materials, particularly as these might affect students' own rewritings.
  6. the capacity to meet the general learning objectives of the School.


Written Work 900 words 25%, Essay 1600 words 35%
Examination 2 hours 40%

Contact hours

One one-hour lecture and one 1.5-hour tutorial per week