Since I seem to have started this, I want to clarify that I didn’t mean to say that all or even most children’s writers are pedophiles. And I certainly don’t think that! I was just repeating something I learned in my course almost 35 years ago. We only studied a few authors in my course. These days, you can find that information anywhere, but there was no internet back then so yes, we had to rely on our professors to teach us all sorts of things about the writers we were reading. I really never meant to upset anyone.
You didn't upset me mllemass. 👍
These posts have a point of view, and I find it interesting to hear what people think.
The prof who said those things however is another matter. I remember some pretty screwy profs from my uni days and I just chalk it up to a learning experience when I look back on it.
I fondly remember my children's lit course though. It was one of my smaller classes. In the end my "kiddie lit" prof asked me to become her teaching assistant but I declined because I was determined to finish my education as quickly as possible and become a teacher, and becoming an assistant would have delayed those plans.
The best book we ever studied was my favourite childhood book "The Secret Garden" ❤❤❤ and the worse one was "Pinocchio" (what dreck that was!🤮🤥🤢).
"You're going into the water... short-arse!" - Sherlock
One of my fav profs I worked with in the School of Education was a Kiddy Lit teacher. She was always bringing me great new books to read, and the library in her office was such a pleasure! On off days I’d go in there, get a huge stack of books and just read the day away. And the illustrations were also so amazing and the talent! She was a huge proponent of children’s lit for many different reasons. I’m always reminded of that great line from You’ve Got Mail where Meg Ryan is talking about how wonderful it is to read books when you’re young b/c they become part of your identity in ways that don’t happen later in life. I’m paraphrasing, but it was something like that. I love children’s books. They’re not as simplistic as people tend to think.
What are some of your favorite books from when you were young?
Mine are: Narnia series The fairy tale books - purple, red, yellow, green, etc., that were illustrated by Arthur Rackham (spelling?”) The Once and Future King Winnie the Pooh Trixie Beldon mysteries There was also a bunch of books about the Ancient Greek world that I can’t remember the titles to. The King Must Die?
Reading your post QZ reminded me of another book I absolutely adored reading when I was young - Bullfinch's Mythology! I loved that book. It was my bible! I received a copy of that book when I was still in elementary school and re-read it many,many times.
"You're going into the water... short-arse!" - Sherlock
The children’s literature course I was in was one of those classes in a large auditorium, so there wasn’t a whole lot of back-and-forth between us and the professor. I was an adult by then, of course, but I fell in love with Gordon Korman’s novel I Want to Go Home! He’s a Canadian writer who published his first novel when he was only15. Our professor played for us his interview with him. The book was hilarious. After the course, I went out and bought every book he had written up to that point. They are laugh-out-loud funny.
Another standout book from that course was From the Mixed-Up Filed of Mrs Basil E. Frankweiler, by E.L Konigsburg. It was such an exciting book about a girl and also about art. I also enjoyed The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. It wouldn’t normally be the type of thing I like, but it was adorable,
Going way back to when I was an actual “young adult” and the target audience for some of these books, I remember wanting to read every book on the paperback rack in the children’s section of our local public library. As I mentioned before, I loved The Outsiders. I loved The Pigman so much that I then read all of Paul Zindel’s other books. I tended to do that a lot - read everything by an author if I like one of his/her books. Of course, I read Are you there, God, it’s me, Margaret? and every other Judy Blume book. I can remember our school librarian showing our class some new books that had just arrived (well, they were new to our school but not necessarily newly published). My friends and I gasped when she showed us a Judy Blume book! And we were right to be shocked - the book was quickly removed from the school shelves, and we had to go back to borrowing Judy Blume from the public library.
Because my parents wouldn’t let me go to the movies when I was younger (“It’s a waste of money! It’ll be on tv eventually!”), I always felt left out when everyone was talking about the latest hit movie. So I began finding the books that the movies were based on, and reading them, instead. I was the only twelve-year+old who read Jaws when everyone else saw it at the movies!
After The Outsiders was made into a movie, they re-issued the book with the actors from the movie on the cover. I resisted buying it because it just wasn’t the same book that I remembered reading. And then one day I was in a used book store, and there it was: The Outsiders that I remembered reading, with its worn-out black and red paperback cover, and I finally bought it.
My parents were very strict too about my sister and myself going to movies (and we weren't allowed to watch TV either until the weekend) so I commiserate with you about not feeling "in the know" with popular culture.
It wasn't religious, it was that my mum considered TV and movies took away from our time to study and doing well in school was paramount in my mum's mind. There was no such thing as video tape so we just had to wait until summer reruns to watch the shows that everyone else had already seen.
The first movie I ever went to see on my own was The Sound of Music (strange that nowadays I don't like musicals). And even then my mum and dad actually chose that movie. The first movie I chose myself to see was Guess Who's Coming to Dinner.
I never read any teenager book authors. I don't know why (l guess I just stuck to the classics because that is what we had in plentiful supply at home) but I am familiar with all of the ones you mention because before being a teacher I worked as a library technician in a high school. So I catalogued all those books and scanned a lot of them. I especially remember Gordon Korman. 😊👍
It wasn't religious, it was that my mum considered TV and movies took away from our time to study and doing well in school was paramount in my mum's mind.
It’s interesting, though, that my mother didn’t want me reading. She thought that reading made me lazy and took away from me doing housework. I remember sitting on the couch, reading my book, and my mother yelling “You’d better not be reading!”. I’d stuff my book between the cushions of the couch and say “No, no, I’m not reading! I’m just sitting here watching tv.” For some reason, watching tv was ok and not a sign of laziness. Whenever I hear about how important it is for parents to read to their children and to encourage reading at home, I wonder about how it worked so differently in my family. We were never read to by our parents (and I was actually discouraged from reading), and I’ve never ever seen my parents read for pleasure. And yet, my sister and I both loved reading. As we got a bit older, I discovered that if I told my mother that my reading was for school, she allowed it - but she wasn’t happy about it. When she caught me reading, she’d say “That had better be for school!”, and I always lied and said “Yes, it’s for school.” I loved school and I never had to be told to study or do my homework, so my mother even complained that my school work took too much of my time away from housework. But I overheard my father once tell her to let me study because I was going to be going to university one day. How did he know??
By contrast, I had a friend in high school who was brought up in a family where tv wasn’t allowed for religious reasons. Her parents were academics - her father was a university professor and both her parents wrote history textbooks. I was shocked when she told me about their tv policy - the tv was on almost all the time at our house (except for meal times). When I asked my friend what she did instead of watching tv, she said that they had to read. They did have TV sets, but they were only allowed to watch the news. And on Sundays, they watched the Wonderful World of Disney - all together, as a family. I know, because I experienced it for myself one Sunday when I was at their house. I was 17 or 18 at the time, so we weren’t little kids. But for all the hours and all the years my friend was supposed to be reading novels or the bible, she instead read only Harlequin Romances. She absolutely refused to read anything else. I figured it was her way of rebelling against the no-tv rule. Ha!
Gosh you had very strict parents Roverpup and Milemass. I had the opposite. I was an only child and was allowed to read whatever I wanted, watch whatever I wanted on TV and go to bed at whatever time I liked. The only things my parents, who were pretty laid back “lefties”, were strict about were manners and “doing the right thing” ethically. My Mother’s often repeated phrase was “there’s the right thing to do and there’s the easy thing to do and the two are not always the same thing.” The other thing she was hugely strict about was table manners. 😀. My Dad In particular loved to read and, as an only child, I spent lots of time with just my parents and ended up reading some of their books at a much earlier age than I probably would have done if I‘d had siblings to take up more of my time., So I turned out to be an “opinionated leftie” with a Degree in English who still loves to read. I think that’s what they were aiming for. 😀