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Abstract


THE COMPARISON OF TREATMENTS OF ANIMAL CHARACTERS IN TURKISH AND FRENCH CHILDREN’S LITERATURE

This study examines the cat characters which are equipped with human values and the humanitarian values given to these characters in Ayşe Sarısayın’s “My Cat’s Name is Çamur” and Claude Roy’s “The Speaking Cat” and being human is questioned from the point of animals. Cats take an important part in both writers’ works and they are represented as they are equipped with humanistic features; moreover, the way they are treated in these works are examined and compared in terms of text in children’s and young adult literature. This study aims to compare the protagonists in literary works by authors from different countries and cultures and the subjects they discuss in terms of the common points; furthermore, it aims to understand the reactions of animals from the point of humans and the reactions of humans from the point of animals via presenting the similar and different aspects of the treatment of cat characters. The critical questioning of inferiority of animals from past to present and the superiority of humankind around animal inferiority and how human-animal relationship is treated in different cultures and literatures are also present in the study. In the scope of this study, first what the term “child” refers to in children’s and young adult’s literature is mentioned. Then, the animal characters in the works of aforementioned authors who belong to different eras and cultures are investigated and the differentiated points of cultural differences are determined. The role of cat characters in determining and adopting men-women relationships and gender roles is also elaborated. The placement of the same kind of animals as protagonists in works of both authors and the treatment of similar subjects determine the essential point in this study which makes use of the basic principles of Comparative Literature. The universality of love for animals regardless of nation, culture, and belief is highlighted in the light of examinations in this study. It is also seen that both authors use humorous language in order to make readers think. Moreover, the criticism of animals which become an important part of life in terms of human-animal dichotomy against the superiority of humankind, as well as the representation of animals via plain and fluent language are also displayed to the readers.



Keywords
Comparative Literary Science, Children's and Youth Literature, social gender, cat character.



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