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Funny GirlsGuffaws, Guts, and Gender in Classic American Comics$
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Michelle Ann Abate

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781496820730

Published to University Press of Mississippi: January 2020

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496820730.001.0001

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In Your Dreams

In Your Dreams

Little Audrey, Freudian Psychoanalysis, and Postwar Child Psychology

(p.90) Chapter 4 In Your Dreams
Funny Girls

Michelle Ann Abate

University Press of Mississippi

Chapter Four features the cartoon-character-turned-comic-book-star Little Audrey.Appearing in her first issue in 1948, the spunky little character would become one of the most beloved and most widely recognized personalities in comics over the next quarter of a century.While the Little Audrey comic books were a wholly separate commercial and creative endeavor from cartoon movie shorts, they retained one powerful link to the version on the big screen:the title character's penchant for dreaming.In numerous issues of the comic book, Little Audrey falls asleep and embarks on an imaginative adventure that constitutes the bulk of the storyline.This chapter places the Little Audrey comic books in general and the dream sequences that occur within them in particular back within their original postwar setting that was fascinated with Freudian psychology.As this discussion contends, these features do far more than simply expand the postwar reach of pop psychology.In an arguably even more important implication, they also challenge the era's prevailing views about child psychology.Accordingly, this chapter explores what Freudian theory can reveal about the dream sequences in Little Audrey and, in turn, what the series' traffic in postwar psychoanalysis can tell us about the role that comics storytelling for young people played in efforts to question, resist, and challenge this climate.

Keywords:   Little Audrey, Harvey Girls, PostwarUS culture, Sigmund Freud, Psychoanalysis

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