University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Pedagogy, Language, Arts & Culture in Education (PLACE) Group Seminars > Land Under Wave: Reading the Landscapes of Tiffany Aching

Land Under Wave: Reading the Landscapes of Tiffany Aching

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Drawing on topoanalysis and landscape history, this paper offers an introduction to the methods of reading imagined landscapes and will demonstrate the applications and possibilities of these methods through an analysis of the landscapes of Terry Pratchett’s Tiffany Aching books. In the four Tiffany Aching books, The Wee Free Men (2003), A Hat Full of Sky (2004), Wintersmith (2006), I Shall Wear Midnight (2010), Pratchett’s landscapes reach their climax. In these texts landscape is presented as having power and agency. It is deep and complex, historical as well as topographical, comprised of memory and folklore just as much as layers of rock and soil. Whereas human interactions with landscape are often presented by Pratchett as difficult negotiations, these narratives centre on the close, almost symbiotic, relationship between Tiffany and the Downs. Her close affinity with the landscape is evident in her name, in her appearance, and within her own mindscapes and private memories. This paper aims to explore the relationship between the child character and her environment, focusing on the representations of domestic spaces and green spaces in the four Tiffany Aching books.

Biography

Jane Suzanne Carroll lectures in English Literature at the University of Roehampton. Her teaching and research interests centre on children’s literature and role of landscape in fiction. She has published a monograph Landscape in Children’s Literature (Routledge, 2012) as well as articles on Susan Cooper, M.R. James, Terry Pratchett, J.R.R. Tolkien, Jules Verne, twentieth-century ghost stories, and children’s fantasy. She is currently working on a new project on the material culture of domestic fantasy.

This talk is part of the Pedagogy, Language, Arts & Culture in Education (PLACE) Group Seminars series.

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