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  • Titill er á ensku The Postmodern Princesses: In Illustrated Icelandic Children‘s Literature
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    Traditionally a princess story happens long time ago, in a faraway land where a beautiful princess awaits her brave prince to save her from an evil force and sweep her off her feet and marry her; however, there is nothing traditional with postmodern princess stories. Postmodernism subverts the classic and stereotypical princess and turns her whole world upside down. The princess is no longer the blond haired and blue eyed angel-like figure, who questions nothing and happily marries whomever it is that saves her. Moreover, the male saviour is emasculated and the importance of his role is questioned. This essay focuses on princesses in illustrated Icelandic children’s literature and the importance of illustrations in postmodern fairy-tale based picture books as well as the positive effect it can have on readers whether they are children or adults. A comparison is made between the classic Icelandic princess story, Sagan af Dimmalimm (“The Story of Dimmalimm”) and three early twenty-first century postmodern princess stories, Sagan af undurfögru prinsessunni og hugrakka prinsinum hennar (“The Tale of the Most Beautiful Princess and her Brave Prince”), Prinsessan á Bessastöðum (“The Princess at Bessastaðir”) and Askur og prinsessan (“Askur and the Princess”). While the old fairy-tales and the old classics hold on to customs and norms the postmodern princess stories celebrate diversity. The archetypes such as the maiden and the hero that represent the princess and the prince in classic fairy-tales are replaced. The maiden has become a strong female figure that is completely self-reliant and in no need for a saviour. The hero is turned into a scrawny, blind prince with no sense of direction and a peasant boy who is in fact homosexual and has no interest in the princess or her kingdom.

  • 7.5.2014

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