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Workers' Tales : Socialist Fairy Tales, Fables, and Allegories from Great Britain - Michael Rosen

Workers' Tales

Socialist Fairy Tales, Fables, and Allegories from Great Britain

By: Michael Rosen (Editor)

Paperback Published: 21st September 2018
ISBN: 9780691175348
Number Of Pages: 328
For Ages: 6 - 18 years old

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A collection of political tales--first published in British workers' magazines--selected and introduced by acclaimed critic and author Michael Rosen

In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, unique tales inspired by traditional literary forms appeared frequently in socialist-leaning British periodicals, such as the Clarion, Labour Leader, and Social Democrat. Based on familiar genres--the fairy tale, fable, allegory, parable, and moral tale--and penned by a range of lesser-known and celebrated authors, including Schalom Asch, Charles Allen Clarke, Frederick James Gould, and William Morris, these stories were meant to entertain readers of all ages--and some challenged the conventional values promoted in children's literature for the middle class. In Workers' Tales, acclaimed critic and author Michael Rosen brings together more than forty of the best and most enduring examples of these stories in one beautiful volume.

Throughout, the tales in this collection exemplify themes and ideas related to work and the class system, sometimes in wish-fulfilling ways. In "Tom Hickathrift," a little, poor person gets the better of a gigantic, wealthy one. In "The Man Without a Heart," a man learns about the value of basic labor after testing out more privileged lives. And in "The Political Economist and the Flowers," two contrasting gardeners highlight the cold heart of Darwinian competition. Rosen's informative introduction describes how such tales advocated for contemporary progressive causes and countered the dominant celebration of Britain's imperial values. The book includes archival illustrations, biographical notes about the writers, and details about the periodicals where the tales first appeared.

Provocative and enlightening, Workers' Tales presents voices of resistance that are more relevant than ever before.

Industry Reviews

"This is a wonderful and wonder-filled collection, which testifies not only to the breadth of the human imagination but also to the enduring importance of my favourite virtue, hope. There couldn't be a better time to bring these stories back into print. We need them more than ever."--Philip Pullman
"This is a valuable collection of fairy tales, fables, and allegories published in Britain's socialist press during its turn-of-the-century heyday. The stories use strategies of defamiliarization and decontextualization to make their case for the social values of equality and cooperation in the simplest of terms."--Elizabeth Miller, University of California, Davis

ISBN: 9780691175348
ISBN-10: 0691175349
Series: Oddly Modern Fairy Tales
Audience: Primary / High School
For Ages: 6 - 18 years old
For Grades: 1+
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 328
Published: 21st September 2018
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 19.6 x 14.8  x 1.8
Weight (kg): 0.41
Edition Number: 1