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In fiction, revisionism is the retelling of a story or type of story with substantial alterations in character or environment, to "revise" the view shown in the original work. Unlike most usages of the term revisionism, this is not generally considered pejorative.
The film Dances with Wolves is a revisionist Western because it portrays the Native Americans sympathetically instead of as the savages of traditional Westerns, which have been criticized as racist. Similarly, the novel Wicked by Gregory Maguire is a revisionist account of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, which portrays the Wicked Witch of the West fighting for what she believes is right, and the Wizard as a ruthless dictator of Oz.
The novel Creation by Gore Vidal portrays a secret history of the Persian Empire, not implausible but neither supported by historical evidence, in which Darius murders King Cambyses and steals the throne from rightful heir Prince Smerdis, in collusion with Queen Atossa. Another revisionist novel is The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor. It re-presents the classic story of Alice in Wonderland as a war for control of an other-worldly realm.
"Rebecca's Tale" is a 2001 novel by British author Sally Beauman. The book is a revisionist treatment sequel to the Daphne du Maurier novel Rebecca and is officially approved by the Du Maurier estate. It continues the original plot and is also roughly consistent with the 1993 sequel Mrs. de Winter by Susan Hill.
Many works of fantasy retell fairy tales in a revisionist manner. Specifically, the substantial subgenre of "Arthurian Literature" can be considered as a continual revision of the classic tales of King Arthur.
The Tales of the Five Hundred Kingdoms series by Mercedes Lackey and The Witch's Boy by Michael Gruber are revisions of classical fairy tales providing a different viewpoint for tales like Cinderella, Rapunzel, and the legend of Persephone among countless other tales.
- List of fictional works using settings created by other artists
- Fan fiction
- Informal sequel
- Mashup (book)
- John Grant and John Clute, The Encyclopedia of Fantasy, "Revisionist Fantasy", p. 810. ISBN 0-312-19869-8.
- Amazon.com: The Witch's Boy (9780060761646): Michael Gruber: Books
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