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Didactics and the Modern RobinsonadeNew Paradigms for Young Readers$
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Ian Kinane

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781789620047

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781789620047.001.0001

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Call it Courage and the Survival of the Imperial Robinsonade

Call it Courage and the Survival of the Imperial Robinsonade

(p.119) Chapter Four Call it Courage and the Survival of the Imperial Robinsonade
Didactics and the Modern Robinsonade

Clive Barnes

Liverpool University Press

This chapter argues that Armstrong Sperry’s Call it Courage cannot be considered a revisionist work of Robinsonade fiction (as it is sometimes interpreted) and that discussions of it in terms of postcolonial or feminist theoretical frameworks are limited precisely because of the text’s spurious ethnography. It also argue that Call it Courage is a particularly important example of a work of Robinsonade fiction whose didactic merit, ideological significance, and perceived value for young readers has changed over time. Ultimately, the chapter argues that Sperry’s narrative is a regenerated imperial Robinsonade in the guise of an indigenous Pacific Island tale, and that there is much to be suspicious of in the novel’s continued placement on North American school curricula.

Keywords:   Imperialism, Armstrong Sperry, Call it Courage, Pacific Islands, Robinsonade

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