The literature of childhood — including the fairy tales, the parables of history, the hero tales and legends, the cautionary lore and the folk beliefs — increasingly serves as that rarest of constructs: a set of references recognizable to us all.
I have to oppose the "to us all" part - at least if you are including people from outside the US. While there are - due to common history - lots of fairy tales and legends that are common both in America and in Europe, the case of "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" showed me once again that there are childrens books too that are common knowledge in Britain and the US and basically unknown of in Germany, for example.
This goes even stronger for Asian or African tales, that will be unknown to most Europeans and Americans (apart from "Mulan", that is).
Don "Snowwhite" Enrico
-------------------- My spelling is Wobbly. It's good spelling, but it Wobbles, and the letters get in the wrong places. - Pooh Bear Posts: 2209 | From: Hamburg, Germany | Registered: Oct 2004
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How does "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" rate with the fairy tales and folk legends of history? It was only published in 1950. I didn't read it until I was 11, and I don't consider it in the same league as the Three Little Pigs, Three Billy Goats Gruff, Cinderella, etc.
The author does mention that he's talking only about, "the children of America". It's sad that he's working so hard to Americanize his children that that they are already falling behind in the knowledge of their birth culture.
Where's the Wheedle in the Needle when you need him?
-------------------- "Strength is the capacity to break a chocolate bar into four pieces with your bare hands - and then eat just one of the pieces." Judith Viorst Posts: 1082 | From: Luzern, Switzerland | Registered: Jan 2005
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