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The CIRCL approach to children’s literature: on reading differently

Lesnik-Oberstein, K. (2017) The CIRCL approach to children’s literature: on reading differently. In: Zhu, Z. (ed.) A Collection of Lectures on Children's Literature by Renowned Scholars. China Social Sciences Press, Jinan, China. (In Press)

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The University of Reading’s MA in Children’s Literature was accredited in 1984 -through the efforts of its founder and director Mr Tony Watkins - as the first MA in Children’s Literature in the UK (and probably the whole world) to be taught in and graduated from a department of (English) Literature, not a Department of Education or Library Studies. This chapter explains the unique approach to research and teaching that has followed from this at CIRCL (the Graduate Centre for International Research in Childhood: Literature, Culture, Media) in terms of following on the implications of the arguments of Jacqueline Rose in 'The Case of Peter Pan or the Impossibility of Children's Literature' (1984) in terms of reading childhood not as a pyscho-biological and essential identity, but instead as a production in perspectives. This radically changes the nature of reading and criticism itself, not just for children's literature but for all literary studies. This chapter gives a range of examples of how and why this approach is worked through.

Item Type:Book or Report Section
Divisions:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Literature and Languages > Graduate Centre for International Research in Childhood (CIRCL)
ID Code:73265
Uncontrolled Keywords:children's literature; psychoanalysis; literary theory; critical theory; cultural studies; gender studies
Publisher:China Social Sciences Press

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