n Mousaion - Nea king! Nea quin! Nea laird! Nea master! : childhood agency in Terry Pratchett's : children's literature

Volume 33, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0027-2639



In this article, a psychodynamic perspective informs the discussion of the ambivalence associated with individuation and growing up which manifests during middle childhood (from approximately 6 to 11 years of age). The author contends that Terry Pratchett explores this ambivalence in his young adult novel, The wee free men (2003), in which his young, female protagonist, Tiffany Aching, must resolve the fears and anxieties that stem from her ambivalence in order to claim agency and complete the process of individuation from her childhood home. The author argues that Tiffany's ambivalence is most clearly reflected in her relationships with the two primary adult females in the novel, Granny Aching and the Fairy Queen, and suggests that the resolution of her ambivalence models resilience strategies for Pratchett's young readers who may be navigating this same problem in their own lives.

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