Imaginary Worlds as an Essential Part of Childrens Literature

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Why are imaginative worlds that differ from the everyday world essential elements of two of the novels we have studied? What are the symbolic purposes of such worlds for the characters, audience, and/or author, and what does this imply about the psychological development of child readers and/or the real world?

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Imaginary world is an essential part of fiction books, especially of children literature, as it helps to create and support the atmosphere of the text and let the readers merge into this world completely. Moreover, it serves as the bridge between the readers and the characters and makes it easier to understand the ideas and action of the personages. The world, skillfully created within a book, appears real and this is why quite often children believe in witches, dragons and hobbits living in Narnia, Hogwarts or Middle Earth. Therefore, imaginary worlds of childrens books are so important for understanding the philosophy of the writer, his or her ideas and beliefs.

The novels, chosen for this essay are probably the most famous fiction texts in the world The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien and Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone by J. K. Rowling. Both appear to be childrens books, but at deeper look become serious and mature. Both books present thoroughly created magical worlds, that differ much from the real world. The two magical worlds, rules which exist there, people, who live there are the reflection of writers views on life, their deeply hidden hopes and beliefs.


Title: Imaginary Worlds as an Essential Part of Childrens Literature

Thesis statement: Imaginary worlds are important for childrens books as they let the readers merge into the text deeper and believe in the reality of the events as well as understand the characters and their actions better.

I. Introduction

Thesis: Imaginary worlds are important for childrens books as they let the readers merge into the text deeper and believe in the reality of the events as well as understand the characters and their actions better.

II. Background

Brief overview of life and works of J. R. R. Tolkien and J. K. Rowling and key points that influenced them as personalities and as writers.

Outline the main ideas suggested by both authors for better understanding of their writing.

III. The imaginary world of The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

The Middle Earth as a perfectly created place for the adventures of the hobbit.

Hobbits, people, elves, goblins, dwarves, orcs and one dragon the inhabitants of the imaginary world. The variety of the peoples in the text remind of the variety of nations in the everyday world and therefore creates the connection between the two words.

Valar as the first language of the Middle Earth and all other imaginary languages in the imaginary world. By creating languages for each of the peoples of his book, J. R. R. Tolkien makes the world of the Middle Earth even more humanlike.

Relationships between all the inhabitants of the Middle Earth. Enmity between dwarves and elves, wars and battles serve as connection between the imaginary and the real worlds as problems and troubles of the two worlds are similar.

The imaginary world of the Middle Earth and its inhabitants as the model of the real world in the novel The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien.

IV. The imaginary world of the Novel Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone

A. Coexistence of the magical and real worlds

Magic and non-magic folks. Witches and wizards can live in the neighborhood with the muggles and successfully conceal their identities.

Wizards as a part of muggle society. Magic people can get married with non-magic ones or muggle-born children can be found as wizards.

Wizards Diagon Alley is situated in the center of London and the students of Hogwarts start their journey to school from the muggles railway station Kings Cross.

B. Hogwarts as one of the centers of magic life and education

Sorting ceremony and division into Houses. All children coming to Hogwarts are sorted into Houses according to their abilities and turns. Therefore, a link to the real world colleges and universities is made.

School organization. The way Hogwarts is organized reminds of many boarding schools all over Britain.

The imaginary world of Harry Potter appears quite similar to the real world with alike institutions, organizations and rules.

V. Brief comparison of the two imaginary worlds created by J. R. R. Tolkien and J. K. Rowling and its influence upon the perception of the texts.

VI. Imaginary worlds of the novels The Hobbit and Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone as the reflection of the authors ideas and beliefs.

A. Symbolism of these worlds for the characters.

B. What these imaginary worlds can say about the authors of the books.

C. The ways such worlds may influence children and their choices in life.

VI Conclusion

Thesis: Despite the differences of the two worlds, characters of the books show children perfect examples of how honesty, love, friendship and mutual help can overcome all the problems.

Annotated Bibliography

Anatol, Giselle Liza, Ed. Reading Harry Potter, Critical Essays. Praeger, Westport CT. 2003.

This is the collection of scholarly articles created by several authors devoted to different issues connected with Harry Potter. Of the greatest interest for the essay is the section Reading Harry Potter Through Theories of Child Development, which seeks to understand the influence of the book on children.

Henry Resnik. " The Hobbit-Forming World of J. R. R. Tolkien." The Saturday Evening Post JRR Tolkien Comments. Web. 28 Jan. 2016. <>.

Despite the fact, that this article is devoted mostly to the Lord of the Rings, the world depicted in both books is the same. The author explains how the world of the Middle Earth is organized, how it functions and how the readers perceive it.

Manlove, C. N. From Alice to Harry Potter: Children's Fantasy in England. Christchurch, N.Z.: Cybereditions, 2003. Print.

This book presents a historical overview of the childrens fantasy literature in England. In the final sections of his book the author states that Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone has been written mostly for children, but this childrens fantasy differs from the stories created before.

Nitzsche, Jane Chance. Tolkien's Art: A Mythology for England' S.l.: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014. Print.

This is the book about the entire J. R. R. Tolkien creative work, so for the essay one chapter of the book has been chosen Chapter 2, The King under the Mountain: Tolkiens Childrens Story. In this section the author discusses whether The Hobbit is a book for children only or it is written for adults.

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