Islands and Captivity in Popular Culture

A Critical Study of Film, Television and Literature

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About the Book

The choices that individuals make in moments of crisis can transform them. By focusing on fictional characters trapped on fictional islands, the book examines how individuals react when forced to make hard choices within the liminal space of a “prison” island. At stake is the perception of choice: do characters believe that they have the power to choose, or do they think that they are at the mercy of fate? The results reveal certain patterns—psychological, historical, social, and political—that exist across a variety of popular/public cultures and time periods.

This book focuses on how the interplay between liminality and the Locus of Control theory creates dynamic sites of negotiated meaning. This psychological concept has never before been used for literary analysis. Offered here as an alternative to the defects of Freudian psychology, the Locus of Control theory has been proven reliable in thousands of studies, and the results have been found, with few exceptions, to be consistent in both women and men. That consistency is explored through close readings of islands found in popular culture books, films, and television shows, with suggestions for future research.

About the Author(s)

Laura J. Getty is a professor of English at the University of North Georgia, Dahlonega.

Bibliographic Details

Laura J. Getty
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 264
Bibliographic Info: 22 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2021
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8024-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4286-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments v
Preface 1
Introduction 3
One. Liminal Islands: Punishment and Rehabilitation 13
Two. Island Rebellion: Resisting Fascism in Takami’s Battle Royale 56
Three. Criminal Islands: Guilt in And Then There Were None 96
Four. Island Panopticon: Lost and Free Will versus Predestination 136
Five. Island Madman: Transgressive Horror in The Island of Dr. Moreau 178
Six. Island Nihilism: Lord of the Flies and Boarding
School Syndrome 206
Conclusion 226
Chapter Notes 233
Bibliography 241
Index 253