Philip Pullman & the Uses & Abuses of Enchantment
by Leonie Caldecott
Bruno Bettelheim, in The Uses of Enchantment, his analysis of the role of fairy tales in nourishing a child’s searchfor meaning, described their importance thus: “More can be learned from them about the inner problems of human beings, and of the right solutions to their predicaments in any society, than from any other type of story within a child’s comprehension. Since the child at every moment of his life is exposed to the society in which he lives, he will certainly learn to cope with its conditions, provided his inner resources permit him to do so.” The child, he wrote a little further on,
needs ideas on how to bring his inner house into order, and on that basis be able to create order in his life. He need . . .