A piece to ponder from boingboing today. Cory Doctorow is reflecting on Jo Walton's essay about how to read science fiction. It could be just as easily applied to fantasy, since, despite assertions the two are quite different, they mingle readily enough.
I do like Walton's assertion that the zombies are just zombies. True, there probably is a metaphor or two in there, but first and foremost, they're zombies who like to eat people's brains.
I'm discovering a great deal in my own fairy tale research by sometimes simply taking a shoe as a shoe, a hood as a hood. Sometimes, the storyteller really is working with what the thing is, rather than what it represents.
Of course, I am skimming a theoretical minefield here, but I'm afraid I haven't had a second cup of coffee yet.
P.S.: One of the comments describes Star Wars as fantasy. It's fairy tale. That's why it's been popping up on this blog rather a lot lately.