On Becoming A Fairy Godmother.

Maitland, S. L. (2003) On Becoming A Fairy Godmother. The Maia Press. ISBN 190455900X

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This is a collection of fifteen short stories (all published for the first time although two had been broadcast by Radio 4) addressing a common theme: namely, menopause. About half of the stories are retellings of narratives drawn from a range of traditions (Northern European fairy stories, classical mythology, biblical stories or historical events) and the other half are new stories deliberately using similar narrative structures to the old stories. Menopausal women are, of course, largely overlooked in traditional stories and, to an extent, in contemporary fiction too. Thus, part of the project was to find and reclaim some of the 'older women' of traditional story; we often forget, for example, that the beautiful Helen of Troy was about sixty when she ran off with Paris, whilst wicked stepmothers in traditional fairy stories usually have adolescent children of their own. Finding these 'hidden' women involved extensive reading, and this reading informs the whole collection. Equally important is the way in which the stories open up the central theme through a wide variety of voices, as well as defamiliarise the contemporary through use of traditional styles and structures to produce a very domestic sort of Magical Realism. RAE_import_type : Authored book RAE_uoa_type : English Language and Literature
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06 Mar 2008 11:52
Last Modified:
22 Nov 2022 12:17