HomeThe Paulinian Compassvol. 1 no. 4 (2010)

Genealogies of Wilderness and Domestication in Children’s Narratives: Understanding Genesis and Genetics in the Untangling of Identity

Layla Abdelrahim

Discipline: Philosophy



The books that children read stand on specific ontological premises and communicate authors’ perspectives on life and on relationships in the world. This inter-disciplinary study is part of the author's doctoral dissertation, where  she examined the perspectives of wilderness and domestication that inform the ontologies of Moominworld by Tove Jansson, the Mites of Flower Town by Nikolai Nosov, and 100 Aker Wood of Winnie-the-Pooh by Alan Alexandre Milne. The author argues that these two perspectives and an attempt at compromise between wilderness and domestication weave various topoi of genesis, transformation, identity, and a knowledge based either on biodiversity and life or on monogeneity and death. Thus, she examined the above-mentioned three narratives through the scientific, literary, theological and folk lenses and compare them to such classics as Roald Dahl’s “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s “The Little Prince.”