Sameness and Difference in Children's Literature: An Introduction

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In this introductory chapter to a volume of essays which investigate cultural sameness and difference for children in a variety of forms and genres in texts from Denmark, Germany, France, Russia, Britain, and the United States from the last two hundred years, O’Sullivan and Immel use Peter Sís’s multi-layered, transnational picturebook Madlenka (2000), about how a young girl playfully negotiates the world within her block, as a template to address the overriding questions and central theoretical issues of the volume. These are: identity and belonging; sameness and difference; representation, perspective and agency (who is seeing, what (or who) is seen, how are they represented, and (potentially) why are they represented in this way?); audience; and media, form and genre. The essays are referenced in each part of the theoretical discussion, creating links and connections accross materials, cultures and epochs in a chapter which provides a wide context and a discerning way to look at diversity and national identity tropes in children’s literature today.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationImagining Sameness and Difference in Children's Literature : From the Enlightenment to the Present Day
EditorsEmer O'Sullivan, Andrea Immel
Number of pages25
Place of PublicationLondon, New York
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan USA
Publication date2017
ISBN (Print)978-1-137-46168-1
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-137-46169-8
Publication statusPublished - 2017

    Research areas

  • Literature studies - Identity, difference, perspective, agency, genre, imagology, cosmopolitanism, children's literature, Peter Sís
  • English