Poetics and Ethics of Anthropomorphism: Children, Animals, and Poetry investigates a kind of poetry written mainly by adults for children. Many genres, including the picture book, are considered in asking for what purposes ‘animal poetry’ is composed and what function it serves. Critically contextualising anthropomorphism in traditional and contemporary poetic and theoretical discourses, these pages explore the representation of animals through anthropomorphism, anthropocentrism, and through affective responses to other-than-human others. Zoomorphism – the routine flipside of anthropomorphism – is crucially involved in the critical unmasking of the taken-for-granted textual strategies dealt with here. With a focus on the ethics entailed in poetic relations between children and animals, and between humans and nonhumans, this book asks important questions about the Anthropocene future and the role in it of literature intended for children. Poetics and Ethics of Anthropomorphism: Children, Animals, and Poetry is a vital resource for students and for scholars in children’s literature.
1. Dear Little Man: Who’s Talking to Whom?
2. How Practical are these Cats? Animal Poetry at Large
3. The Little Dog Laughed to See Such Sport: The Childish Appeal of Humanimal Ambivalences
4. Beware the Jubjub Bird: Cautionary Verses Revisited
5. If You Go Down to the Woods Today: Wild and Domestic Textuality
6. ‘They’d Eaten Every One’: Food Anthropomorphism in ‘The Walrus and the Carpenter’ and Elsewhere
7. This Little Piggie Went to Market: A New Humanimal Politics for Poetry