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  • Editors’ Introduction
  • Sandra L. Beckett and Lissa Paul

The final general issue of 2009 is also the final issue to be edited by Sandra and Lissa. We would like to extend our thanks to The Johns Hopkins University Press for their advice and support through the years of our tenure as editors. Much of the success of The Lion and the Unicorn has been due to the exceptionally high production values and editorial care provided by JHUP. Our thanks especially to Bill Breichner, publisher, Carol Hamblen, production manager, Alta Anthony, journals circulations manager, our wonderful production coordinator Kris Zgorski and our copyeditor, Mary Hashman—for all their good advice, careful editing, and patient attention to detail. We also want to take this opportunity to welcome the incoming editorial team, Karin Westman, Naomi Wood, and David Russell. Through 2009 they have been handling new submissions, and they assume complete editorial responsibility with the January 2010 issue.

As we reflect on the September 2009 issue, we realize that it never ceases to amaze us that the essays chosen for general issues frequently have common threads and shared concerns, even when individual essays were not specifically selected for their coherence. That is once again the case for this issue. Most of the essays deal with consumerism, either economic or cultural (sometimes both). In the first two essays, the theme of commodification is interfaced with classic fairy tales. In “Rewriting ‘Little Red Riding Hood’: Victorian Fairy Tales and Mass-Visual Culture,” Laurence Talairach-Vielmas challenges the commodification of “Little Red Riding Hood” during the advent of mass visual culture through her analysis of Anne Thackeray Ritchie’s and Harriet Louisa Childe-Pemberton’s Victorian revisions of Perrault’s tale. Amanda K. Allen, in “The Cinderella-Makers: Postwar Adolescent Girl Fiction as Commodity Tales,” focuses on two “commodity tales” aimed at the teenage girl consumer of the 1940s and 1950s: Betty Cavanna’s Going on Sixteen and Mary Stolz’s Rosemary. Using the theories of Bourdieu and Irigaray, Allen examines these adolescent girl romance novels as Cinderella case [End Page v] studies in which money provides the “Right Dress” as the magical token of recognition. Whereas Allen considers post–World War II adolescent girl fiction as commodity tales, Jackie E. Stallcup, “Stamping the Coin of Character: Elsie Dinsmore and the Power of Christian Wealth,” examines Christian wealth in Martha Finley’s post–Civil War Elsie Dinsmore series. Although the previous essays point to the dangers of consumer culture, Stallcup convincingly argues that “Christian wealth” allows Finley’s protagonist to have a positive and powerful social impact in the post–Civil War South. Cultural capital is also the focus of Erica Hateley’s essay, “Magritte and Cultural Capital: The Surreal World of Anthony Browne.” Hateley argues that Browne’s appropriation of Magritte reflects a desire not so much to make art accessible to all, but to link his own work with that of a canonical cultural heritage. She points out that the action taken by the Magritte estate against Browne links cultural capital inextricably to economic capital. Like Hateley, who is almost alone in interrogating the politics of Browne’s artistic references, Joe Sutliff Sanders questions the generally accepted subversiveness of metafiction in children’s literature, at least in fiction about reader-book relationships. Through an analysis of China Miéville’s Un Lun Dun, he demonstrates instead metafiction’s ability to open spaces for critical reading. Artistic references and metafictional devices such as those examined in the Hateley and Sutcliff Sanders essays have both been seen as characteristics of crossover works. The final general essay, “Tove Jansson and the Crossover Continuum,” by Maija-Liisa Harju, argues convincingly that a philosophy of continuum between life stages is inherent in much crossover fiction. Harju’s analysis of Moominpapa at Sea, marketed for children, and The Summer Book, marketed for adults, shows how one author uses complex themes, often of an existential nature, to appeal to readers of all ages. Although Harju’s goal is not to consider the cultural capital of Finland’s national treasure, she does touch on the highly commodified nature of Jansson’s Moomin stories, which have a Disney-like status in some countries...


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pp. v-vii
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