Playing with the book: Victorian movable picture books and the child reader

Field, Hannah (2019) Playing with the book: Victorian movable picture books and the child reader. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis. (Accepted)

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Abstract

Playing with the Book centers on a beautiful and unusual group of Victorian texts: novelty and movable picture books for young children. These ingenious items might, say, fold out to a great length, or have pop-up three-dimensional scenes spring out to meet the reader, or mount mechanical toys on the page. In playing with the book’s typical format, nineteenth-century novelty picture books raise questions not just about what books should look like, but also about what reading is—particularly when it comes to children’s literature and children as readers. What happens when reading becomes just as much a physical activity as an intellectual one, as the child pulls a tab or lifts a flap to continue a story? Why do some educators and scholars of children’s literature dismiss novelty books? Where do we draw the line between children’s books and toys, when novelty books so often blur it? And how can looking at antique novelty books now, which are often in poor condition, change our vision of the child reader as we see children ripping up or coloring in the lessons that books (and adults) try to teach them? Playing with the Book considers these questions by way of a series of case studies of individual formats, as well as an intensive examination of copies of novelty picture books that have survived from the nineteenth century.Richly illustrated, this book will be of interest to researchers and students of the history of the book, reading,and visual and material texts, as well as scholars of Victorian culture and of children’s literature.

Item Type: Book
Commentary on: Unset
Additional Information: Unset
Keywords: Unset
Schools and Departments: School of English > English
Research Centres and Groups: Centre for Innovation and Research in Childhood and Youth
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA History of Great Britain > DA020 England > DA129 By period > DA300 Modern, 1485- > DA550 Victorian era, 1837-1901
N Fine Arts > NC Drawing. Design. Illustration > NC0950 Illustration
P Language and Literature > PZ Childrens literature
Related URLs:
    SWORD Depositor: Unset
    Depositing User: Hannah Field
    Date Deposited: 04 Jun 2018 10:53
    Last Modified: 04 Jun 2018 10:53
    URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/76036
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