English 3405 Children's Literature (2 Sections)
Section 001 CRN 90792
Children's Literature 1230-1345 TR
The editors of Classics of Children's Literature, John Griffith and Charles Frey, note that "The great children's stories and poems. . . . Perhaps more than any other writers . . . constitute our real mythology." In this course we will be looking closely at this "mythology," a mythology that embodies many of our culture's ambiguous attitudes about children and childhood. The course will consider the love and hatred of childhood, the manipulation, the idealization, the mystification of childhood, as reflected in a literature which is, finally, created mainly by adults. Students will examine this literature in terms of its history and the history of childhood itself. We will explore the rich complexity and archetypal significance that makes children's literature an important cultural inheritance and links it to the literature that we customarily reserve for adults.
Finally, this survey course stresses the development of more astute evaluation of the literature. Students will be encouraged to think more cogently and purposefully about what goes into a serious judgment of literature for children and to think carefully about the validity of various critical methods of analysis and evaluation.
Two major papers, an oral presentation, brief written responses, midterm and final exam. (Group 5)
Section 002 CRN 94386
Children's Literature 1400-1450 MWF
Study of the rich variety of texts written for or primarily read by children, including picture books, poetry, fairy tales, chapter books, and novels. Emphases include historical, cultural, pedagogical, critical, and theoretical perspectives. (Group 5)