Visualising Time and Space in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader and The Magician’s Nephew


  • Duncan Hay University College London
  • Andrew Richardson University of Northumbria


C. S. Lewis, visualisation, spatial narratology, digital literary scholarship.


Drawing on innovations in literary visualisation developed by the Chronotopic Cartographies project led by Sally Bushell at Lancaster University, this paper introduces two methods for visualising the spatial structure of literary texts both drawing upon the same underlying code and spatial schema. Using analysis of two ‘secondary world’ fantasies (that is, texts in which the events of a story occur in a space entirely divorced from reality) from C. S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia series, The Magician’s Nephew and The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the paper compares two methods of visualising spatial graphs of each text. The first is two-dimensional and synchronic, showing the spatial structure of the text as a whole; the second three-dimensional and diachronic, seeking to show how that spatial structure changes over time. In so doing we shall show the ways in which these different modes of visualisation invite new modes of interpretation, and reveal similarities and disparities between the two texts that would not otherwise be evident.


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