Throughout the eight books that constitute the core of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables series, the protagonist, Anne Shirley, later Anne Blythe, crosses many borders. Some of these are geographical as she changes towns in order to study or work. As time goes by, Anne’s life reaches broader circles: at first she is only “of Green Gables”, later “of Avonlea” and, in the third volume, “of the Island”. The heroine also passes from an idyllic childhood to a painful motherhood, from romantic dreams of a perfect prince to the realisation that “perfect” is not what she wants and that the man who does not match her dreams is the one who is truly ideal for her. An abundance of social conventions are waiting for Anne to test their limits, which she does, allowing herself at times to abandon the seriousness of Mrs Dr Blythe. All these crossings are discussed in the present paper in order to propose a reading which considers border crossings as pivotal points in the series.
Jan 4, 2023