Resistance in the Prairie: Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House Series and the (Male) Mythologies of the Frontier

Belaid Afettouche, Amar Guendouzi


Since Jackson Turner’s The Significance of the Frontier in American History (1893), the legendary American Westward Frontier is often regarded as a male-dominated space, wherein women are absent or relegated into a subaltern position involving mostly and simply the four principles of the Victorian‘cult of womanhood’, namely piety, purity, submissiveness, and domesticity.

Contrary to this dominant view, this paper tries to demonstrate that the Frontier was not solely a masculine monolithic space; it was alsoan ideological stage engaged byAmerican women writers in their discussions of gender-related issues, such as social roles, the private and the public spaces. For this sake, Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House seriesis studied in order to illustrate how the author contests the dominant narrative of the Frontier by dialogizing the discourse of her male counterparts and negotiating a new relationship with the natural landscape of the Frontier.

Texte intégral :



-Anderson, William. Laura Ingalls Wilder Country. New York: HarperCollins, 1990

-----. The Story of the Ingalls. De Smet, South Dakota: Wilder Memorial Society, Inc, 1993.

-Armitage, Susan and Jameson, Elizabeth. Eds. The Women’s West. Norma, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma press, 1987.

-Bakhtin, Mikhail. The Dialogic Imagination: Four Essays. Ed. M. Holquist. Trans. C. Emerson and M. Holquist. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1981.

-Cixous, Hélène. “The Laugh of the Medusa”. Trans. Keith Cohen; Paula Cohen. Signs 1.4 (1976): 875-893.

-Cooper, James Fenimore. The Leatherstocking Tales I: The Pioneers, The Last of the Mohicans, The Prairie. New York: Library of America, 1985.

-------. The Leatherstocking Tales II: The Pathfinder, The deerslayer.New York: Library of America, 1985

-Fellman, Anita Clair. Little House, Long Shadow: Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Impact on American Culture. Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 2008.

-Hines, Stephen W. Ed. Laura Ingalls Wilder Farm Journalist: Writings from the Ozarks. Columbia, Missouri: University of Missouri Press, 2007.

-Grey, Zane. (1921)Riders of the Purple Sage. Middlesex: Penguin, 1990.

-Kilgore, John. “Little House in the Culture Wars” in The Vocabula Review, April 2005 edition.

-Kolodny, Annette. The Lay of the land: Metaphor as Experience and History in American Life and Letters. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1975.

-McAuliffe, Dennis Jr. Little House on the Osage Prairie. 2009.

-Maher, Susan Naramore. “Laura Ingalls and Caddie Woodlawn: Daughters of a Border Space”. The Lion and the Unicorn 18.2 (1994): 130-142.

-Miller, John E. Becoming Laura Ingalls Wilder: The Woman behind the Legend. Columbia, MO: University of Missouri Press, 1998.

-Moore, Rosa Ann. “Laura Ingalls Wilder and Rose Wilder Lane: The Chemistry of Collaboration.” Children’s Literature In Education 11 (1980): 101-109.

-Romines, Ann. Constructing the Little House: Gender, Culture, and Laura Ingalls. The United States of America: The University of Massachusetts Press, 1997.

-----. “The Frontier of the Little House”. Laura Ingalls Wilder and the American Frontier: Five Perspectives. Ed. Dwight M. Miller. Lanham: UP of America, 2002.

-Seidman, Rachel F. “This Little House of Mine” in Common Place: The Interactive Journal for Early American Life. 3. 3 (2003).

-Slotkin, Richard. Regeneration Through Violence: the Mythology of the American Frontier 1600-1860. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1973.

-Todorov, Tzevetan. Mikhail Bakhtin: The Dialogical Principle. Trans. W. Godzich. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1984.

-Turner, Frederick Jackson. The Frontier in American History. http: //

-Wister, Owen. (1902)The Virginian. New York: Oxford University Press, 1998.

-Wilder, Laura Ingalls. (1932)Little House in the Big Woods. New York: Harper, 1971.

-------. (1935) Little House on the Prairie.New York: Harper, 1971.

-------. (1937) On the Banks of Plum Creek. New York: Harper, 1971.

-------. (1939) By the Shores of Silver Lake. New York: Harper, 1971.

-------. (1940)The Long Winter. New York: Harper, 1971.

-------. (1941) Little Town on the Prairie. New York: Harper, 1971.

-------. (1943) These Happy Golden Years. New York: Harper, 1971.


  • Il n'y a présentement aucun renvoi.