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Portal:Children's literature

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The Children's Literature Portal


Children's literature or juvenile literature includes stories, books, comics, magazines, poems, and any printed or digital medium that are made for children demographics. Modern children's literature is classified in two different ways: genre or the intended age of the reader.

Children's literature can be traced to stories such as fairy tales that have only been identified as children’s literature in the eighteenth century, and songs, part of a wider oral tradition, that adults shared with children before publishing existed. The development of early children's literature, before printing was invented, is difficult to trace. Even after printing became widespread, many classic "children's" tales were originally created for adults and later adapted for a younger audience. Since the fifteenth century much literature has been aimed specifically at children, often with a moral or religious message. Children's literature has been shaped by religious sources, like Puritan traditions, or by more philosophical and scientific standpoints with the influences of Charles Darwin and John Locke. The late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries are known as the "Golden Age of Children's Literature" because many classic children's books were published then. Read more...


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Lad, the rough collie featured in Terhune's stories
Lad, A Dog is a 1919 American novel written by Albert Payson Terhune and published by E. P. Dutton. Composed of twelve short stories first published in magazines, the novel is loosely based on the life of Terhune's real-life rough collie, Lad. Born in 1902, the real-life Lad was an unregistered collie of unknown lineage originally owned by Terhune's father. Lad's death at the age of 18 was mourned by many of the story's fans, particularly children. Through the stories of Lad's adventures, Terhune expresses his views on parenting, obtaining perfect obedience without force, and the nature and rights of the "well-bred". After a slow start, the novel became a best seller in the adult fiction and children's fiction markets, having been repositioned as a young adult novel by Grosset and Dunlap in the 1960s and 1970s. Selling over one million copies, it is Terhune's best-selling work and regarded as the one that propelled him to fame. It has been reprinted over 70 times by Dutton, and republished by a variety of publishers since its original release, including at least six international translations. Contemporaneous critics praised Terhune's writing style and the overall story appeal, while dog breeders criticized his unrealistic canine characters. In retrospective reviews, critics considered that the novel had aged badly, and that Terhune displayed little actual writing skill, but noted that the novel was able to hold long-lasting appeal as it triggered the reader's desire to have such an ideal dog. A series of four children's picture books based on three of the stories from the novel were published by Margo Lundell between 1997 and 1998.

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Winnie-the-Pooh

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'Curiouser and curiouser!' Cried Alice (she was so much surprised, that for the moment she quite forgot how to speak good English).

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Christopher Smart
Christopher Smart (11 April 1722 – 21 May 1771) was an English poet. He was a major contributor to two popular magazines and a friend to influential cultural icons like Samuel Johnson and Henry Fielding. Smart, a high church Anglican, was widely known throughout London. Smart was infamous for his role as "Mrs. Mary Midnight" and widespread accounts of his father-in-law, John Newbery, locking him away in a mental asylum for many years over Smart's supposed religious "mania". Even after Smart's eventual release, a negative reputation continued to pursue him as he was known for incurring more debt than he could pay off; this ultimately led to his confinement in debtor's prison until his death. Smart's two most widely-known works are A Song to David and Jubilate Agno, both at least partly written during his confinement in asylum. However, Jubilate Agno was not to be published until 1939 and A Song to David received mixed reviews until the 19th century. To his contemporaries, Smart was known mainly for his many contributions in the journals The Midwife and The Student, along with his famous Seaton Prize poems and his mock epic The Hilliad. Although he is primarily recognized as a religious poet, his poetry includes various other themes, such as his theories on nature and his promotion of English nationalism. Some of his most famous religious poetry is Hymns for the Amusement of Children, one of the first books of hymns expressly written for a juvenile audience.

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Marcus Cornish's life-size bronze sculpture of Paddington Bear that stands in Paddington Station in London

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Children's literature and Young adult literature

Children's literature: Book talkChildren's literature criticismChildren's literature periodicalsInternational Children's Digital LibraryNative Americans in children's literature

Children and Young Adult Literature topics

Young adult literature: Gay teen fictionLesbian teen fictionList of young adult authorsYoung Adult Library Services Association

Associations and awards: Children's Book Council of AustraliaCBCA book awardsGovernor General's Literary Award for Children's Literature and IllustrationIBBY CanadaAmerican Library AssociationAssociation for Library Service to ChildrenNewbery MedalCaldecott MedalGolden Kite AwardEzra Jack Keats Book AwardSCBWISibert MedalLaura Ingalls Wilder MedalBatchelder AwardCoretta Scott King AwardBelpre MedalCarnegie MedalKate Greenaway MedalNestlé Smarties Book PrizeGuardian AwardHans Christian Andersen AwardAstrid Lindgren Memorial AwardSociety of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators

Lists: List of children's classic booksList of children's literature authorsList of children's non-fiction writersList of fairy talesList of illustratorsList of publishers of children's books

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