Recasting social criticism in 19th century fiction and modern fantasy fiction: corrupt institutions as theme in Bleak House by Charles Dickens and Going Postal by Terry Pratchett
MetadataShow full item record
This paper explores how fantasy writer Terry Pratchett transforms social commentary in novels by subverting readers' expectations. This is done using a section from Bleak House (1853) by Charles Dickens, whose novels are considered prominent examples of social commentary. The section is used to consider the literary presentation of social commentary in novels as it manifests in the theme of corrupt governance. A section from Pratchett's Going Postal (2004) follows, illustrating how Pratchett expands on the presentation of social commentary, focusing on the same theme. The aim is to show that while readers generally expect a fantasy novel to contain an element of entertainment, Pratchett exceeds this expectation: he entertains readers with elements of fantasy while subtly injecting this realm with similarities of everyday life, causing readers to reflect on important concepts like corruption and its effect on contemporary society.
- Faculty of Humanities