LIT 4334: The Golden Age of Children's Literature

The Relationship Between Location and Well-Being

At the beginning of the novel, one notices that there is a opposition between India and England; and these opposition also have to do with the personality and well-being of Mary. In India Mary is sick all of the time, “her face was yellow because she had been born in India and had always been ill in one way or another.” This shows how India is not the place that a English child should be raised in, throughout the novel India is represented as a place where you will find illness and ugliness. But when she moves to England she changes, health improves and she starts to even be beauty. The secret garden seems to help cure Mary of the illness that she had and it does the same for Colin also. The novel represents the ways in which your location could be the reasons in which your health is failing.

 

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The Character of Wendy

Wendy is the most developed character in the story of Peter Pan and Wendy andby some she is considered the central protagonist. Wendy is proud of her childhood and enjoys telling stories to her younger brothers. Just like Peter Pan, she is at the beginning of adolescence and has a fear of adulthood. Wendy fears of adulthood mainly come from the way that she sees her father acts. At the beginning of the story, Wendy focus is to avoid growing up; Peter Pan helps her to avoid growing up by taking her and her brothers to Neverland. Neverland is supposed to be a place where you can remain young forever. However, going to Neverland seems to bring out more of Wendy’s adult side. It seems that Neverland had the exact opposite effect on Wendy than it did on Peter Pan. This adult side also comes out more when the lost boy tribe asks her to be their mother; this is very interesting because I often times hear people say that motherhood brings maturity to the mother no matter the mother age. Wendy agrees to be their mother and starts performing mother-like tasks for them. These duties help Wendy to accept adulthood because she actually enjoys being a mother. After she accepts adulthood, she returns to London because she does not want to postpone growing up any more. Later in the novel, we see Wendy grow into a lovely woman and motherhood.

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The character of Wendy is so much different from that of Peter Pan, Peter Pan is a boy that just refuses to grow up no matter the situation; which is something that we actually see in today’s society. However, when Wendy is put in a situation like motherhood, she grows up; and this is one of the perfect situations in which one should grow up. Wendy character shows that individuals will not maturity or grow up until they make the decision to grow up; remember maturity does not come with age. It is Wendy who makes the decision that it is time for her to grow up, so she more than willing to do that. You can make suggestions to someone, but until they are ready to take the step for change, nothing will change.

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Political Issues In The Wizard of Oz!?!?

Nearly everyone has heard of the Wizard of Oz, but not everyone has

heard about how The Wizard of Oz references to political issues

during the late 1800s. A history teacher by the name of Henry

Littlefield noticed the parallels between life during that time and

the movie during the 1960s; if these parallels are true it wouldn’t

be anything new because authors have being making references to

political issues for centuries now.

 

Dorothy was said to represent American values and people; throughout

the novel she was loyal, resourceful, and determined; which are some

of the characteristics that people believe Americans had doing that

time. Others believed that she represented President Theodore

Roosevelt, not only because he was a loyal, resourceful, and

determined man but also because of the similarities in their names.

(The-o-dore and Dor-o-thy) The Tin Woodman represents the industrial

workers, who doing this time were experiencing dehumanization; which

is what happened to the Tin Woodman experienced when he lost his

human body. After losing his human body, the Tin Woodman became

immobile and rusted, which is how many factory workers felt when

businesses began to shut down due to the depression. The Wizard

represents Mark Hanna. Hanna was the Republican party’s chairman

during this time; and just how the Tin Woodman, Scarecrow, and

Dorothy all saw the Wizard differently, Americans doing this time

also saw Hanna in many different faces. The Wizard and Hanna both

were portrayed as different people depending on the individual that

was in front of them. All of these things are interesting and may

point to the fact that in writing this he was telling the history of

the things he witnessed during this time.

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Search For Identity

Identity in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is constantly shifting and this creates anxiety and confusion for Alice and the readers of the novel. Throughout the novel, Alice is continually questioning her identity and admits that she is uncertain about who she really is. Several times in the novel she also ordered to identify herself by the creatures she meets, but she has doubts about her identity; so she is not able to do that that.

In the beginning of the novel, Alice believes that she must be someone else because her original sense of self is disturbed. Alice believes that she must be Mabel which is someone that she finds dreadful and ignorant. This false identity of self begins to make her have doubt and feel hopeless; so she decides to stay in the rabbit hole until someone is able to tell her who she is.

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This doubt about her identity is further diminished by her physical appearance. Alice grows and shrinks several times and she finds this very confusing. When the Caterpillar questions her about her identity, she replies, “I-I hardly know, Sir, just at present-at least I know who I was when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since then.” (83-84) Alice uses the phrase, ” I must have been changed” instead of “I changed” which shows her loss of control over her identity. She is mistaken for a serpent by the pigeon because she admits to eat eggs and because of her long neck. The multiple changes in her physical appearance makes Alice feels in stable because she is constantly changing; and this is making it hard for her to truly learn her identity.

Cheshire Cat questions another part of Alice’s identity, which is her sanity. He believes that she must be “mad” as she enter Wonderland.

As the novel continues, Alice learns to identify with what she is not. She tells the other characters in the novel that she is not mad and not subject to the commands of the king and queen.

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Pinocchio Sources

Edson, Laurie. Reading relationally: postmodern perspectives on literature and art. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2000. Print.
Jeannet , Angela . “Centenary of a Character: Pinocchio.” American Association of Teachers of Italian 59.3 (1982): 184-186. Jstor . Web. 3 Feb. 2013.
Sherman, Laurie. Nineteenth-Century literature criticism. Detroit, Mich.: Gale Research, 1990. Print.
Verwaest, Toon, Camillo Bruni, David Gurtner, Adrian Lienhard, and Oscar Niestrasz. “Pinocchio: bringing reflection to life with first-class interpreters.” SIGPLAN Not. 45 (2010): 774-789. Print.
Wunderlich , Richard. “The Tribulations of Pinocchio: How Social Change Can Wreck A Good Story.” Poetics Today 13.1 (1992): 197-219. Print.
Wunderlich, Richard, and Thomas J. Morrissey. Pinocchio goes postmodern: perils of a puppet in the United States. New York: Routledge, 2002. Print.

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Brave: Gender Equality

The Princess and the Goblins made me think of one of my new favorite Disney movies, Brave. This book and movie illustrate princesses in a different way than they have previously been seen; they seem to show gender equality. In many of the Disney movies, we see the typical princess that is beautiful and portrays the characteristics of a loveable young woman; and this same thing is seen in books about princesses. They seem to portray the characteristics that were typical of women during that time; however, Brave is illustrating the need for gender equality when it comes to women. The need for gender equality is definitely seen in the famous Disney princesses movies (this is hard for me to say because I real love the Disney princesses); these princesses makes you wonder what does true equality look life for a female character in a fairly-tale world? This same question came to mind when reading The Princess and the Goblins.

Brave seems to be the first Disney movie that shows some type of equality when it comes to that of men and women. Taking place in Ancient Scotland, the film tells the story of a teenage girl named Merida who is not your typical Disney princess. Merida is adventurous, a skilled archer, sword fighter, athletic, independent; which are all qualities that goes against her being a princess. She is just as wild as her younger brothers are. The movie, Brave, allows Merida to find her own identity; she likes to sew but she also likes archery and swordsmanship. These likes show the embracing of tomboyishhness characteristics among young girls.

 

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Irene and Merida both want to be independent and love adventures; they both want to break away from the things that are expected of them because they are princesses. Irene and Merida show want little girls can become if they are allowed to truly find themselves and be the individuals that they want to. Just because they are not the typical princesses, do not mean that they are not good and respectable princesses.

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Development of Children’s Literature

Children literature is very interesting for many different reasons. First it is interesting because it seems to be the only type of literature that is written by a author that doesn’t directly relate to its audience; many children authors are older so they might have different experiences then their audience. Even though children literature is meant for the pleasure of children it is highly censored by adults. Adult authors write the stories, so most of the times the stories include things that adults believe children should know. Children readers want to experience something that is outside of the norm like people who can fly and talking animals. However adults, want children literature to have a story line that will teach the readers a lesson. For example, many adults don’t like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory because it is full of fun but doesn’t have any moral lessons in it. So today we often seen stories that are funny and enjoyable by children but also praised by adults because of the moral lessons that it contains.

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Introducting Shanequa Conage

Hello, my name is Shanequa Conage and I am fourth year English student that will be graduating this May. I am also  pursing two minors, one in Family, Youth, and Community Sciences and the other in Education. After graduating in May, I plan on attending Nova to pursue a master degree in Early Childhood Education and Reading; during this time I also plan on teaching at a elementary school back home in Jacksonville.

I am taking this course to first fulfill my English degree requirements but I am also taking the course because I believe that it will help me with my future career in the education field. This course will help me with my future career because it will introduce me to many different aspects of children  literature. These different aspects probably will help me to better understand the texts, so that I am able to better teach them to my students.This semester I am hoping to improve on my analysis of children literature, in order to better explain and teach children texts to my future students. This semester I am looking forward to reading the following books: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, Pinocchio, and The Jungle Book; I have watched movies on many of these books and I have heard good things about these books so I am excited to read these books for myself. There are really no items on the syllabus that worry me, everything is pretty straight forward and easy to understand.

My idea of “children’s literature” is literature that is tailored towards the reading pleasure of children. Children literature are stories that are usually interesting to the children but also have moral lessons behind them that parents/adults believe that children should know. However, children’s influence on children literature is limited even though the literature is meant for them.  Some of my favorite children’s literature text are the David series written by David Shannon, these are books that I believe start teaching young children manners and right/wrong when it comes to certain issues. No, I have not taken any children’s literature classes before but this semester I will be taking three children literature classes; and I am very excited to be taking them. I am not sure what the term “Golden Age” means and what it has to do with children literature, but I am interested to learn more about the term and what it has to do with children literature.

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