Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Carol D. Stevens


This thesis discusses female archetypal warriors in several fantasy novels written for children and adolescents. The novels examined include A Wrinkle in Time, A Wind in the Door, and A Swiftly Tilting Planet by Madeleine L'Engle; The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley; Dragonflight, Dragonguest, The White Dragon, Dragonsong, and Dragonsinger by Anne McCaffrey; and The Tombs of Atuan and Tehanu by Ursula K. Le Guin. The thesis argues that, by expanding gender roles and portraying their female characters as strong archetypal warriors, these authors force a rethinking of existing archetypal criticism. Using Jungian archetypal theory, traditional archetypal criticism, and specifically feminist archetypal criticism, the study presents these writers as pioneers in the struggle to change gender views and re-vision the image of the archetypal warrior to promote the female warrior as distinct in both voice and character.