This book sets out to explore the structure and meanings within the most popular of all literary genres - the adventure story. Deconstructing the Hero offers analytical readings of some of the most widely read adventure stories such as Treasure Island , the James Bond stories and Star Wars. The book describes how adventure stories are influential in shaping children's perception and establishing values.
When many of these stories define non-white, non-European people as inferior, and women as marginal or incapable, we should be worried about what they are teaching our children to think. Margery Hourihan shows how teaching children to read books critically can help to prevent the establishment of negative attitudes, discourage aggression and promote values of emotion and creativity.
'Thorough but evidently accessible poststructuralist approach to classic children's texts. A very good introduction to such an approach for English students.' - J. A. Winston, University of Warwick