Aspects and Issues in the History of Children's Literature

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Maria Nikolajeva
Greenwood Publishing Group, 1995 - Literary Criticism - 207 pages

The contributors to this collection of essays address children's literature as an art form, rather than an educational instrument, as has been the traditional approach. Scholars from 10 different countries present a variety of approaches to the history of children's literature, including views on sociological, semiotic, and intertextual models of its evolution. Other issues explored include influence and interaction between stories and their countries of origin. This strong presentation of international perspectives on children's literature will be a valuable resource for scholars of children's and comparative literature.

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The Historical Model of the Development of Childrens Literature
Writers Writing a Short History of Childrens Literature within
Germany and the Germans As Depicted in British Childrens
International Influence on the Nineteenth Century Finnish
Views on Childrens Literature in the Netherlands After 1880
Loss and Hope in the English
The Origin and Function of Laughter in Childrens Literature
Select Bibliography
About the Contributors

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Page 1 - The light is come upon the dark benighted way. Dead ! Dead, your Majesty. Dead, my lords and gentlemen. Dead, Right Reverends and Wrong Reverends of every order. Dead, men and women, born with Heavenly compassion, in your hearts. And dying thus around us every day.
Page xiv - It is good when it happens," say the children, "That we die before our time." Alas, alas, the children! They are seeking Death in life, as best to have. They are binding up their hearts away from breaking With a cerement from the grave. Go out, children, from the mine and from the city; Sing out, children, as the little thrushes do; Pluck your handfuls of the meadow-cowslips pretty; Laugh aloud, to feel your fingers let them through.
Page 42 - and see whether it's marked 'poison' or not": for she had read several nice little stories about children who had got burnt, and eaten up by wild beasts, and other unpleasant things, all because they would not remember the simple rules their friends had taught them, such as, that a red-hot poker will burn you if you hold it too long; and that if you cut your finger very deeply with a knife, it usually bleeds; and she had never forgotten that, if you drink much from a bottle marked "poison," it is...
Page 1 - Now, these tumbling tenements contain by night a swarm of misery. As on the ruined human wretch vermin parasites appear, so these ruined shelters have bred a crowd of foul existence that crawls in and out of gaps in walls and boards; and coils itself to sleep, in maggot numbers, where the rain drips in...
Page 19 - Fables: but he frankly declared to me his mind, " that he did not delight in that learning, because he did not believe they were true;" for which reason I found he had very much turned his studies, for about a twelvemonth past, into the lives and adventures of Don Bellianis of Greece, Guy of Warwick, the Seven Champions, and other historians of that age.
Page 1 - ... the night, Her breathing soft and low, As in her breast the wave of life Kept heaving to and fro. So silently we seemed to speak, So slowly moved about, As we had lent her half our powers To eke her living out. Our very hopes belied our fears, Our fears our hopes belied—- We thought her dying when she slept, And sleeping when she died.
Page 7 - How the Children leave us : and no traces Linger of that smiling angel band ; Gone, forever gone ; and in their places Weary men and anxious women stand. Yet we have some little ones,' still ours ; They have kept the baby smile we know, Which we kissed one day, and hid with flowers, On their dead white faces, long ago.
Page 5 - But if none at all ever took place, we should regard every little child as a man or woman secured; and it will easily be conceived what a world of endearing cares and hopes this security would endanger. The very idea of infancy would lose its continuity with us. Girls and boys would be future men and women, not present children. They would have attained their full growth in our imaginations, and might as well have been men and women at once.

About the author (1995)

MARIA NIKOLAJEVA is Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature at Stockholm University where she teaches children's literature. She is the current president of the International Research Society for Children's Literature and author of The Magic Code: The Use of Magical Patterns in Fantasy for Children.

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