From Gianni Rodari, the father of modern Italian children’s literature, The Grammar of Fantasy is a guide to fairy tales and their potential for teaching creative storytelling to artists of all ages and abilities—with radiant illustrations from award-winning author-illustrator Matt Forsythe and a refreshed translation from Jack Zipes.
“The ultimate synthesis of Rodari’s exuberant knowledge, a book of both pedagogy and poetics, poetry for teachers and pedagogy for poets.” —Italo Calvino
A groundbreaking pedagogical work that is also a handbook for writers of all ages and kinds, The Grammar of Fantasy offers a playful, practical path to finding your own voice through the power of storytelling. Full of ideas, glosses on fairy tales, stories, and wide-ranging activities, this book changed how the creative arts were taught in Italian schools.
Gianni Rodari is not only revered as a children’s author, but also remembered for his visionary pedagogy, and it is these two fields he combines in this revolutionary work.
Translated into English by acclaimed scholar of folklore and children’s literature Jack Zipes, and with original art from Matthew Forsythe, this edition of The Grammar of Fantasy is one to live with and return to for its humor, intelligence, and remarkable understanding of children and the imagination.
Gianni Rodari is widely considered the father of modern Italian children’s literature. In 1960, he collaborated with the Education Cooperation Movement to develop exercises to encourage children’s creative and critical thinking abilities. The recipient of the prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Prize in recognition of his contribution to children’s literature, he was also one of Italy’s most important educators and an activist who understood the liberating power of the imagination.
Jack Zipes is a renowned children’s historian and folklorist who has written, translated, and edited dozens of books on fairy tales (Breaking the Magic Spell,The Irresistible Fairy Tale, The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm). He is professor emeritus of German and comparative literature at the University of Minnesota.
Matthew Forsythe is an award-winning author and illustrator of picture books, including Pokko and the Drum, Mina, and The Gold Leaf. He was also lead designer on Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time and production designer of the Oscar-nominated short film Robin Robin.