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Academic Articles

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Contemplating Fictional and Nonfictional Orphan Stories (2004)

Dennis Leoutsakas


Throughout our lives we move from one story to the next. Whether we are listeners, readers, writers, or tellers, “we live our lives immersed in stories” (Simpkinson & Simpkinson, 1993, p. 1). From the many stories we encounter, both fiction and nonfiction, the orphan-as-hero stands out as one of the most prominent figures in literature. This paper considers three powerful issues related to orphan stories. First, it analyzes the legendary orphan-heroes used in fictional literature. Second, it demonstrates the differences between imagined orphans and orphans. Finally, after comparing the previous findings, this paper concludes by discussing the value of a new form of fictional literature and suggesting examples of story blending that link traditional fiction with actual narratives.

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