Idylls and othernesses
Childhood and rurality in film
in Cinematic countrysides
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As notions of idyll have emerged in filmic expression, so too have notions of rural childhood idyll. This chapter looks at films made for children and at filmic realisations of famous literary portrayals of children in the countryside and unashamedly idyllic depictions of rural childhood, which deliberately play upon romantic notions of the rural as an ideal childhood environment. It explores two other aspects of childhood in the cinematic countryside. Firstly, heeding Little's concern about the whole notion of idyll, the chapter considers films which go beyond obvious ideas of idyll in two ways. The first are films which show the other side of idyll, or life behind the 'façade' of idyll, raising issues of poverty, but also oppression through patriarchal power, and other harsher realities of children's lives. The second way is films which explore 'the otherness' of childhood. The chapter offers some thoughts on children, rurality and dwelling.

Editor: Robert Fish


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