Abstract

While the fantasy genre is one of the most widely read modes of writing, literary criticism and academic discussion of the genre takes place at a much lower level. This imbalance has developed in part because of a misconception that fantasy genre writings cannot accomplish significant, literary purposes. This thesis first offers an argument for why the fantasy genre should receive more attention in scholarly circles, then presents an excerpt of a fantasy novel. The argument draws from the limited amount of existing criticism to highlight the strengths of the fantasy genre, building a case that, in most respects, works of heroic fantasy deserve thoughtful critical attention, and concluding with a proposal that further attention will elevate the acknowledged weaknesses. The excerpt from the novel is not intended as an exemplary model of what fantasy can accomplish; it is merely a first step on the long journey to those goals.

Degree

MA

College and Department

English

Rights

http://lib.byu.edu/about/copyright/

Date Submitted

2003-07-09

Document Type

Thesis

Handle

http://hdl.lib.byu.edu/1877/etdm931

First Advisor

Sally T. Taylor

Second Advisor

Dennis R. Cutchins

Third Advisor

Dean Hughes

Fourth Advisor

Dennis J. Packard

Keywords

literary criticism, fantasy

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