Category Archives: Philosophy and Childrens Literature

The Omission of Race in new editions of Mark Twains Huck Finn


25 years ago Roger Sutton, now editor of the Horn Book wrote an article for the School Library Journal about a new edition of Mark Twains Huckleberry Finn edited by John H. Wallace. The article was critical of Wallace’s omission of … Continue reading

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Say What: The applied power of speech and the symbolism of words


  I have been a lifelong devoted student of the semiotics of language, or words as symbols and of the power of those symbols for transformation, deception, manipulation and aesthetic enhancement both positive and negative. We as humans express ourselves … Continue reading

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“Signs and Symbols Rule the world, not rules and law” – Confucius


   To a child, signs and symbols emerge in the consciousness prior to an understanding of governing rules. Children see the world in deeply symbolic terms. We teach children through signs and symbols, red means hot, blue means cold, an … Continue reading

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Children’s literature being the inheritor of the folksy fairy tale plays an important role in the emotional, intellectual and imaginative development of the child and in fact, so profound is the effect some books have upon the child that their … Continue reading

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Dangerous and absolutely dark


“Dangerous and absolutely dark” is the way Joseph Campbell describes the sacred caves of France and Spain. These were the mythic wombs where man first sought to return to the place of creation. It is no wonder then that so … Continue reading

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The dark side of children’s literature; Propaganda and a child’s perception of the world


   Children learn by repetition. This is a point conceded by most pedagogues and while there are certainly other methods by which a child might learn repetition is the oldest, most reliable across a diverse spectrum and for the purposes … Continue reading

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the power of storytelling


 Recently I attended an oral arts lecture and left with a renewed appreciation of the power of story. While this lecture focused on the oral art of storytelling the same truths can be made to apply to the written word, … Continue reading

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