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Lecture 4

EN 3636 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Chapmen, Maria Edgeworth, Hannah More

Course Code
EN 3636
Richardine Woodall

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4. Ironic innocence - the adult can never be a child again
a. Adult projections of child
5. Fairy Tales
a. Fairy tales were meant to teach lessons, not originally meant for children
b. Intended for innocent children
Jenkins: (really really important)
Look at the politics of motherhood
The permissive paradigm
Children's culture
Children's culture and the kit aesthetic
The child has their own desires and functions, the adults remove what the child wants
to do to fulfill our own purposes
Adults use the idea of childhood innocence to support their own agendas
School integration
o After civil war was the restoration
o Prior to the civil war, African Americans were depicted as happy (to show that
they were happy with slavery)
Once they gained their freedom and schools were desegregated, African
Americans were depicted as violent and wanting to rape the white women
Peter Hunt:
Children's books have educational and commercial effect
o They "ought" to be good for something
Ideologies in children's books influence child's development
Children's literature "educate children into a particular culture" (4).
Children's books are marginalized
o This marginalization is related to the female authorship of many children's books
o Directed towards a marginalized section of our community - those with special
Children's books do not exist in a vacuum
The question of the "good" is fundamental to children's literature
Children's Books
Uses of Children's Literature
Passes time
Acquiring literacy
Expanding the imagination
Inculcating social attitudes
Coping with problems
Can stories heal?
Maria Edgeworth
Rational moralist
Group of writers
Mostly female
Write between 1750-1850
Cultivate rational and moral thought in children
Instructional primarily, but still some attempt to offer children delight
Rational agency and self-command
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