Date of Award
Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Teaching (Honours) BA/BTch (Hons)
Dr Daniel Reynaud
ANZSRC / FoR Code
199999 Studies in the Creative Arts and Writing not elsewhere classified, 220499 Religion and Religious Studies not elsewhere classified
Uncle Arthur's Bedtime Stories stands as the principal and archetypal Seventh-day Adventist children's literature text. It is heavily inscribed with distinct ideologies, which are specifically referential to Seventh-day Adventist dogma and faith. As children read these texts they are exposed to and affected by these ideologies. This thesis seeks to expose the overt and covert ideologies of the text so that their power can be negated and their value evaluated. This is accomplished through a brief investigation of the author and the publishing institution that conceived the text, then through an explanation of the development and aims of critical literacy reading processes. These reading processes are then applied to the text in order to render the explicit the belief structures that sustain the stories' proposed 'truths' and 'meanings', and which were constructed into the text by the author and institution.
This investigation has revealed that Uncle Arthur's Bedtime Stories assumes levels of authority over truth, interpretation and the reader, which it does not intrinsically command. The recognition of this assumption of authority allows the text to propose and defend questionable 'truths' and spurious arguments, and also to justify unethical behavior. The thesis shows that critical literacy argues that both the author and the institution are complicit in the generation and transmission of these messages.
The thesis also presents and explains a body of evidence it has discovered that points to the negative effects of Uncle Arthur's Bedtime Stories on some readers.
Nicholls, R. (2003). An ideological reading of Uncle Arthur's Bedtime Stories using critical literacy (Bachelor's thesis, Avondale College, Australia). Retrieved from https://research.avondale.edu.au/theses_bachelor_honours/61/