Pax Litteraria

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Odd values are already being projected onto the authors of the future:

Boys more frequently revert [sic] to violent terminology such as ‘gun’, ‘sword’, ‘battle’, ‘attack’, or ‘shoot’.

Ferguson says boys’ preoccupation with violence during her storytelling workshops has made her introduce a rule that if a child kills someone off they have to replace them with a new character.

“Otherwise they’d kill off every character.”

I’m not sure whether this implies a confining idealisation of childhood (violence is bad, therefore impressionable children should not write about violence) or a narrowly didactic view of literature (violence is bad, therefore uplifting stories should not dwell on violence). It certainly appears to have little to do with the variety of ways in which literature has grappled with the realities of conflict and death.

“Victor, you know my rule about killing characters without replacing them. I should never have let you get started on the June Rebellion of 1832.”

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