The treatment of select social issues in contemporary children's literature

MacDonald, Martha LaSalette (1983) The treatment of select social issues in contemporary children's literature. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

The inclusion of all kinds of social issues in children’s literature is a relatively recent phenomenon. It is important, therefore, that all who are involved in bringing children and books together be cognizant of how specific social issues are treated in contemporary children’s books. As well, all who have responsibility for the selection of such books must have knowledge of comprehensive criteria for the evaluation of literature which deals with these social issues. -- This study was designed to examine a select number of social issues in children’s books and to determine if these issues were presented honestly, realistically and in the context of good children’s literature; and on the basis of this examination, to compile an annotated bibliography of recommended books which display literary quality and social concern. The particular social issues selected for study were death, handicapism, racism and sexism. -- As a preliminary step in the process all available critical literature on the depiction of these social issues in books for children was reviewed and a list of guiding principles was identified. -- Following this, an initial list of books was compiled using all appropriate standard bibliographic tools. Items in this initial list were examined for their suitability for inclusion in the annotated bibliography. Items chosen for inclusion were those books which: -- a) meet the general criteria for excellence in children’s literature; -- b) have been personally examined by the writer; -- c) have been recommended in at least one reputable selection aid; -- d) are presently in print of because of their interest appeal and popularity are available in the existing collection of many schools. -- The annotated bibliography, which makes no attempt to be exhaustive, does include a recommended core of books on each of the issues under study: death, handicapism, racism and sexism. -- Based on the review of related literature and the compilation of the annotated list of contemporary children’s books which reflect social issues, the writer has made a number of recommendations related to the selection, for children, of books which depict contemporary social issues without sacrificing literary merit.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/7727
Item ID: 7727
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 146-152
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1983
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Children's literature--Social aspects

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