Ethnic Literary Traditions in American Children's Literature

Hardcover | November 15, 2009

EditorMichelle Pagni Stewart, Yvonne Atkinson

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his book expands the understanding of children’s literature as ethnic literature. A diverse blend of contributors helps readers to approach children’s literature from an insider’s perspective, thus enhancing the literary experience found in ethnic children’s books. This collection of essays will inform readers of the cultural nuances of ethnic literature, the signs, signals, and tags that can be misunderstood or overlooked. America has become more aware of our cultural differences, and Ethnic Literary Traditions in American Children’s Literature celebrates those distinctions.

 

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his book expands the understanding of children’s literature as ethnic literature. A diverse blend of contributors helps readers to approach children’s literature from an insider’s perspective, thus enhancing the literary experience found in ethnic children’s books. This collection of essays will inform readers of the cultural nuances o...

Michelle Pagni Stewart is an Associate Professor of English at Mt. San Jacinto College.  She has published articles in Children’s Literature Quarterly, MELUS, Studies in American Indian Literatures. Yvonne Atkinson is Assistant Professor of English at Mt. San Jacinto College.  She has published articles in AMERICAN@, A Gift of Story a...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:268 pages, 8.41 × 5.58 × 0.74 inPublished:November 15, 2009Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230618758

ISBN - 13:9780230618756

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Table of Contents

Do Dick and Jane Still Live Here? Reading Children’s Literature as Ethnic Literature--Yvonne Atkinson and Michelle Pagni Stewart * PART I: American Indian Literature * Listening to the Loons: On Finding the Ideas for My Books--Joseph Bruchac * Beyond Feathers and Fringe: An Interview with Cynthia Leitich Smith--Michelle Pagni Stewart * Survival Through Stories: An Introduction to Indian Literatures--P. Jane Hafen * Oral Narrative and Objibwa Story Cycles in Louise Erdrich’s The Birchbark House and The Game of Silence--Elizabeth Gargano * Alive and Well and Reclaiming Their Cultural Voice: Third Generation Native American Children’s Literature--Michelle Pagni Stewart * PART II: African American Literature * The Cadence of Language: An Interview with Julius Lester--Yvonne Atkinson * "Way Down in the Jungle Deep, the Lion Stepped on the Monkey’s Feet": An Introduction to African American Literature--Yvonne Atkinson * Trauma and National Identity in Haitian American Young Adult Literature--Katharine Capshaw Smith * For All My Children, or Approaching African American Children’s Picture Books--Neal Lester * PART III: Asian American Literature * “Where Are You From?" Does an Author’s Ethnicity Matter in Mainstream Contemporary Literature?--Lisa Yee * On Finding a Home--Cynthia Kadohata * Foreigners Within: an Introduction to Asian American Literature--Traise Yamamoto * Acts of "Desicreation": Urban Space and South Asian American Identity in Tanuja Desai Hidler’s Born Confused”--Melinda L. de Jesus * “Examining History: Representing War in Asian American Autobiographies for Children--Rocio G. Davis * PART IV: Latino/a Literature * Widening the Circle: An Oral Interview with Julia Alvarez--Michelle Pagni Stewart * Art, Activism, and Community: An Introduction to Latina/o Literature--Tanya González * Conflicting Inclinations: Luis J. Rodriguez’s Picture Books for Children--Phillip Serrato * Reading Trauma and Violence in U.S. Latina/o Children's Literature--Tiffany Lopez * Further Reading

Editorial Reviews

“In bringing together literary criticism, interviews and author reflections, Stewart and Atkinson’s Ethnic Literary Traditions in American Children’s Literature examines the focal literature from several different ethnic groups.  The polyphonic nature of this volume emphasizes the complexity of the field of contemporary children’s literature and invites readers to take part in some of the rich dialogues within African American, Latina/o, Asian American and Native American Children’s Literatures.   A much needed anthology within the field of Children’s and Young Adult Literature, Ethnic Literary Traditions in American Children’s Literature fills an important niche, offering accessible essays appropriate for scholars as well as undergraduate and graduate students alike.”—Michelle Martin, author of Brown Gold: Milestones of African-American Children’s Picture Books, 1845-2002“Ethnic Literature Traditions in American Children's Literature is an extraordinary path breaker. Its content is far-reaching and presents a convincing argument for explorations into the intellectual and poetic aspects of ethnic children's literature. This volume takes readers into deeper cultural territory than the children's book field has thus far succeeded in offering.  There is now reason to hope for fewer stereotypes in children's books and an enlarged commitment to social justice among both artists and educators.”—Donnarae MacCann, author of the prize-winning White Supremacy in Children's Literature“Given the great changes in the demographics of America, it is more important than ever to pay attention to what constitutes ethnicity, especially how it is represented in children's literature. This is the main focus of the excellent collection of essays in Ethnic Literary Traditions in American Children's Literature, which explores the cultural nuances of ethnic literature and its potential impact on readers' views of diverse ethnic groups in America—African Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, Latino Americans. There are many misconceptions about ethnic literature, which has always been expected to conform to western literary traditions and standards. Fortunately, the essays in this collection, which also includes a few interviews, demonstrate clearly that ethnic literature stems from diverse cultural experiences and demands careful and thoughtful reflection. In this respect, Ethnic Literary Traditions in American Children's Literature opens up new perspectives that will enrich the study of children's literature.”—Jack Zipes, Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota