The picturebook is now recognized as a sophisticated art form that has provided a space for some of the most exciting innovations in the field of children’s literature. This book brings together the work of expert scholars from the UK, the USA and Europe to present original theoretical perspectives and new research on picturebooks and their readers.
The authors draw on a variety of disciplines such as art and cultural history, semiotics, philosophy, cultural geography, visual literacy, education and literary theory in order to revisit the question of what a picturebook is, and how the best authors and illustrators meet and exceed artistic, narrative and cultural expectations. The book looks at the socio-historical conditions of different times and countries in which a range of picturebooks have been created, pointing out variations but also highlighting commonalities. It also discusses what the stretching of borders may mean for new generations of readers, and what contemporary children themselves have to say about picturebooks.
This book was originally published as a special issue of the New Review of Children’s Literature and Librarianship.
1. Introduction Evelyn Arizpe, Maureen Farrell and Julie McAdam 2. What is a Picturebook? Across the borders of history Barbara Kiefer 3. On the Strangeness of Pop Art Picturebooks: Pictures, texts, paratexts Bettina Kümmerling-Meibauer and Jörg Meibauer 4. Before and After the Picture Frame: A typology of endpapers Teresa Duran and Emma Bosch 5. ‘Must We to Bed Indeed?’ Beds as cultural signifiers in picturebooks for children Maria Nikolajeva and Liz Taylor 6. Picturebooks and Multiple Readings: "When We Lived in Uncle’s Hat" by Peter Stamm and Jutta Bauer Jean Webb 7. ‘Jings! Crivens! Help ma Boab!’ - It’s a Scottish Picturebook Maureen Farrell 8. Do You Live a Life of Riley?: Thinking and talking about the purpose of life in picturebook responses Janet Evans 9. Reading Mental Processes in "The Arrival" Brenda Bellorín and María Cecilia Silva Díaz 10. Crossing Visual Borders and Connecting Cultures: Children’s responses to the photographic theme in David Wiesner’s "Flotsam" Evelyn Arizpe and Julie McAdam