Literary Precedents for Tarzan of the Apes

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Tracing specific literary sources may not be particularly valuable, for Burroughs was not a literary man — according to Porges, Burroughs thought that Owen Wister's The Virginian (1902) was among the greatest American novels. While some literary works, such as Gulliver's Travels (Jonathan Swift, 1726) as a source for the Ant Men, seem fairly obvious, and Lupoff's book finds some interesting parallels in long-forgotten science-fiction works, it seems more likely that his ideas came from common myths and from popular fiction itself. In commenting on the origins of Tarzan, Burroughs mentioned having read Kipling's Mowgli stories, but most often he referred to ancient legends such as Romulus and Remus for examples of children raised by animals (and becoming mythical). The popular fiction of Burroughs's early life, however, included such models as the dime novels for action entertainment; the tales of Jules Verne, including Journey to the Center of the Earth...

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This section contains 312 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Tarzan of the Apes Short Guide
Copyrights
Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults
Tarzan of the Apes from Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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