Christina Stead: The Man who Loved Children

(1170 words)
  • Anna Snaith (King's College, University of London)

The Man Who Loved Children is Christina Stead's best known novel. She was overt about its autobiographical origins. It is a novel based on her own family and her adolescence in Sydney, Australia. It was set, however, at the insistence of her American publisher, in Washington D. C. and Baltimore rather than Sydney, and in the 1930s rather than the 1910s, the years of Stead's actual adolescence. A novel about the tyranny of family dynamics, which Angela Carter has likened to a Greek tragedy, Stead has created an incredibly disturbing portrait of the power struggles and suffering, as well as the intimacy and creativity, which occur in the domestic home.

The man of the title, Sam Pollit, in fact loves himself more than his …

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Citation:
Snaith, Anna. "The Man who Loved Children". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 July 2001
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=238, accessed 26 October 2014.]