Willy Wonka, Dahl’s chickens and heavenly visions

Rudd, David ORCID: 0000-0002-2602-3732 (2018) Willy Wonka, Dahl’s chickens and heavenly visions. Children’s Literature in Education. ISSN 1573-1693

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Official URL: https://link.springer.com/journal/10583


This article reconsiders Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory 50 years after its initial UK publication, and over a hundred years since Dahl’s birth. It suggests that the book has often been misinterpreted, in that the work is more critical of modern capitalism than is often recognised, capturing a post-World War II shift in sensibilities from a culture of hard work and deferred gratification to one that celebrated consumerism and instant enjoyment. The article explores this idea by taking a psychoanalytical perspective, drawing largely on the work of Jacques Lacan, especially his notions of the superego, enjoyment and desire. It suggests that Dahl was one of a number of writers (Anthony Burgess and Marshall McLuhan are also discussed) who responded to this shift in capitalist relations, not simply in terms of the content of his work but in the way in which he wrote.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article to be published in Children's Literature in Education. The final authenticated version is available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10583-018-9366-6
Uncontrolled Keywords: Roald Dahl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,Jacques Lacan, jouissance, Anthony Burgess, Marshall McLuhan,
Divisions: Bolton School of the Arts > English and Creative Writing
Depositing User: Tracey Gill
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2018 10:15
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2019 02:30
Identification Number: 10.1007/s10583-018-9366-6
URI: http://ubir.bolton.ac.uk/id/eprint/1896

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