Artful Dodgers: Reconceiving the Golden Age of Childrens Literature

Paperback | October 29, 2010

byMarah Gubar

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In this groundbreaking contribution to Victorian and children's literature studies, Marah Gubar proposes a fundamental reconception of the nineteenth-century attitude toward childhood. The ideology of innocence was much slower to spread than we think, she contends, and the people whom weassume were most committed to it - children's authors and members of the infamous "cult of the child" - were actually deeply ambivalent about this Romantic notion. Rather than wholeheartedly promoting a static ideal of childhood purity, Golden Age children's authors often characterize young peopleas collaborators who are caught up in the constraints of the culture they inhabit, and yet not inevitably victimized as a result of this contact with adults and their world. Such nuanced meditations on the vexed issue of the child's agency, Gubar suggests, can help contemporary scholars to generatemore flexible critical approaches to the study of childhood and children's literature.

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In this groundbreaking contribution to Victorian and children's literature studies, Marah Gubar proposes a fundamental reconception of the nineteenth-century attitude toward childhood. The ideology of innocence was much slower to spread than we think, she contends, and the people whom weassume were most committed to it - children's aut...

Marah Gubar is Associate Professor of English and Director of the Children's Literature Program at the University of Pittsburgh.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:272 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.68 inPublished:October 29, 2010Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199756740

ISBN - 13:9780199756742

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Table of Contents

PrefaceIntroduction: "Six Impossible Things Before Breakfast"1. 'Our Field': The Rise of the Child Narrator2. Collaborating with the Enemy: Treasure Island3. Reciprocal Aggression: Unromantic Agency in the Art of Lewis Carroll4. Partners in Crime: E. Nesbit and the Art of Thieving5. The Cult of the Child and the Controversy over Child Actors6. Burnett, Barrie, and the Emergence of Children's TheatreIndex