Children's Literature and the Fin de Siècle

封面


The close of a century invites both retrospection and prognostication. As a period of transition, it also brings a sense of uncertainty, finality, and apocalypticism. These feelings stem from various events, such as political turmoil, scientific advancements, and social change. As might be expected, literature reflects such changes and the feelings they engender. But perhaps more surprisingly, children's literature is especially sensitive to such matters, and fiction for children often struggles with dark and unpleasant issues. This book examines fin de siècle tensions in 19th- and 20th-century children's literature from around the world.

Each chapter is written by an expert contributor, and the volume ranges over a disparate variety of topics. These include poetry, series books, pacifist fiction, gender issues, religion and literature, eco-criticism, minority experiences, humor and the Holocaust, fantasy and science fiction, and computer culture. In exploring these issues in relation to children's literature, the contributors reveal the shifting nature of our values and the world in which we live. Global in nature, the chapters look at children's literature from such places as Germany, Holland, the United Kingdom, Australia, and the United States.

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第 4 頁 - A token for children, being an exact account of the conversion, holy and exemplary lives and joyful deaths of several young children.
第 163 頁 - What makes you a coward?" asked Dorothy, looking at the great beast in wonder, for he was as big as a small horse. "It's a mystery/' replied the Lion. "I suppose I was born that way. All the other animals in the forest naturally expect me to be brave, for the Lion is everywhere thought to be the King of Beasts. I learned that if I roared very loudly every living thing was frightened and got out of my way. Whenever I've met a man I've been awfully scared; but I just roared at him, and he has always...
第 16 頁 - was an original story I was, at least, no conscious imitator in writing it but I do know that, since it came out, something like a dozen story-books have appeared, on identically the same pattern. The path I timidly explored believing myself to be 'the first that ever burst into that silent sea...
第 159 頁 - No matter how dreary and gray our homes are, we people of flesh and blood would rather live there than in any other country, be it ever so beautiful. There is no place like home.
第 135 頁 - We Are All in the Dumps with Jack and Guy: Two Nursery Rhymes with Pictures, HarperCollins, 1993.
第 9 頁 - These elders, our betters by a trick of chance, commanded no respect, but only a certain blend of envy — of their good luck — and pity — for their inability to make use of it. Indeed, it was one of the most hopeless features in their character (when we troubled ourselves to waste a thought on them : which...
第 160 頁 - If you had known their power you could have gone back to your Aunt Em the very first day you came to this country.
第 53 頁 - ... that his soul was out of gear with its surroundings - a cog-wheel unconnected with any machinery, just like the idle cog-wheel of a cheap Beheea sugar-crusher laid by in a corner.
第 159 頁 - What she expresses here, what she embodies with the purity of an archetype, is the human dream of leaving, a dream at least as powerful as its countervailing dream of roots.

關於作者 (2003)

RODERICK MCGILLIS is Professor of English at the University of Calgary. His previous books include For the Childlike: George MacDonald's Fantasies for Children (1992), The Nimble Reader: Literary Theory and Children's Literature (1996), A Little Princess: Empire and Gender (1996), and Children's Literature and the Postcolonial Context (1999). He is also the author of numerous articles and book chapters.

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