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Parallel Worlds in British Fantasy Film


  • Jelena Irina Deutscher

Summary, in English

The thesis deals with the representation of fantasy in modern film with special regards to parallel-world stories. In order to demarcate parallel worlds from other types of magical worlds in fantasy stories, the thesis contains an extensive chapter of definitions. Starting out with Todorov’s and Jackson’s well-known theories on fantasy / the fantastic, the thesis turns to other approaches allowing for a wider definition of the genre and the inclusion of parallel-world stories. Other than Todorov’s and Jackson’s studies, the thesis argues in favour of legitimising elements in fantasy that underline the existence of the magical world. With the help of classification systems of fantasy and theories on space, the mechanisms of parallel-world stories and their respective symbolic significance are identified. On the basis of this theoretical background, examples of film analysed in detail: Stardust, the first six parts of the Harry Potter series and the first two parts of the Narnia series. The main focus of the analysis lies on the visual representation of the mundane and the magical world. Special attention is paid to parallels between the represented worlds, magic space and Britishness as a legitimising element in parallel-world fantasy film.


Publishing year




Document type

Student publication for Master's degree (two years)


  • Languages and Literatures


  • Otherworld
  • Tolkien
  • Todorov
  • Subversion
  • Stardust
  • Secondary World
  • Narnia
  • Multiverse
  • Magic Time
  • Magic Space
  • Magical Worlds
  • Legitimation
  • Jackson
  • Harry Potter
  • Film
  • Fantasyland
  • Fantasy
  • The Fantastic
  • Faerie
  • Crosshatch
  • Britishness
  • Alternative World
  • Alternate Reality
  • Parallel Universe
  • Parallelwelt
  • Parallel World
  • Primary World
  • Polder
  • Portal
  • Wonderland


  • Anders Ohlsson (Professor)