“A Constant Transit of Finding”: Fantasy as Realisation in Pan’s Labyrinth
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- Clark, R. & McDonald, K. Child Lit Educ (2010) 41: 52. doi:10.1007/s10583-010-9099-7
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This article considers Guillermo Del Toro’s Pan’s Labyrinth as a text which utilises key codes and conventions of children’s literature as a means of encountering the trauma of Fascism. The article begins by placing Pan’s Labyrinth at a contextual crossroads involving fairy tale and a Spanish cinematic tradition and considers the significance of the text as a hybrid creation. It then explores some of the tropes and motifs that are re-imagined within the narrative. There follows an investigation of the film as a testament to the importance of fiction and fantasy when faced with the very real consequences of war, oppression and trauma. Finally, Pan’s Labyrinth is considered alongside a heritage of children’s literature whose motifs, symbols and figures are remarkably available for appropriation, re-invention and renewal.