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The Norton Anthology of Children's Literature: The Traditions in English (College Edition) Paperback – March 10, 2005


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The Norton Anthology of Children's Literature: The Traditions in English (College Edition) + The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup and a Spool of Thread + Holes (A Yearling Book)
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Product Details

  • Series: Norton Anthology
  • Paperback: 2512 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; College Edition edition (March 10, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039397538X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393975383
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #487,990 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. To give an idea of the breadth of this sampling from children's literature through the ages, consider that the volume's "timeline" begins in the Eighth Century—B.C. The bulk of the material in this slipcased paperback, however (and bulk is used here in the most complimentary way possible), spans the past four centuries. The delights are abundant. A facsimile image of a 1777 version of The New-England Primer, America's original schoolbook, is reprinted in its entirety (sample vocabulary words: humiliation, mortification, purification). John Newbery, who "excelled at collecting materials that could be assembled cheaply and attractively to be marketed" (and for whom the Newbery Medal is named), is represented by an excerpt from his book on "Epistolary Writing." In addition to instructing children on how to correspond with church and government officials, he includes Anne Boleyn's last missive to Henry VIII as an example of an "important" letter. Zipes and his collaborators cull from fables, nursery rhymes, comics, poetry, plays, science fiction and fantasy, providing a lens through which the evolution of childhood itself can be viewed. The scope is expansive—the fairy tales hail from Grimm and Perrault, but also from Francesca Lia Block and Julius Lester. Headnotes introduce authors and illustrators, often tracing the lineage between them: Lear's Yonghy-Bonghy-Bo as grandfather to Seuss's Sneetches, for instance. The volume contains dozens of complete works and hundreds of illustrations, including a 32-page color inset of seminal artwork from the likes of Greenaway, Brunhoff and Sendak. A mile wide and very deep, this is an invaluable resource for professionals, but fun for casual perusing, too. All ages. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

This addition to the highly respected Norton Library is impressive for many reasons. A wealth of material is provided with 170 authors and illustrators represented. Eighty works are presented in their entirety, including The New-England Primer, Robert Louis Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses, J. M. Barrie's play of Peter Pan, and Eleanor Estes's The Hundred Dresses. Less familiar but equally interesting selections, such as those by Robert Baden-Powell and Shannon Garst, are also present. The range of material covers a span of 350 years, with the copious but very readable explanatory material provided in terms of introductions, headnotes, etc., tracing not just the historical development of children's literature, but the impact of changing religious, educational, cultural, and social philosophies as well. While the editors state that the book is intended as an introduction to children's literature for students primarily at colleges and universities (and it will be a boon to those charged with designing such courses), it also serves to advance the scholarly study of children's literature as a serious and worthwhile enterprise. Resources for both students and instructors are included on the W.W. Norton Web site.–Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Would recommend this book for adults to read to children.
BookCrazy
Includes useful and illuminating biographical information on authors as well as historical context of each piece.
SmartLady
I have this book as a textbook this semester and it has great info.
Trottin'-Butterz

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

60 of 60 people found the following review helpful By G. DeCandido on November 12, 2005
Format: Paperback
If you teach children's literature, or think about children's literature, or have children or were once a child, this mighty compendium is for you. It offers in its rich pages a history of children's literature and an array of works, not only in extract but in more than 40 examples of complete stories, from Peter Pan to Roll of Thunder Hear my Cry. The many introductions and glosses are written with spirit and verve: Dr Seuss described as "high-spirited anarchy" or Frog and Toad as "perfect books of their kind." Alphabets and chapbooks, primers, fairy tales (including ten versions of Little Red Riding Hood, from Perrault to Francesca Lia Block), picture books, nursery rhymes, comics, fantasy and sf, school stories and more are included, from authors as hallowed as Newbery and as modern as Nikki Grimes. This kind of anthology is always dependent on what one can get permission to reprint,under that stricture its editors have done marvelously well. Online resources keyed to this title are also available. Profusely illustrated with black and white images, a section of good color plates is included.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By John Matlock on March 17, 2006
Format: Paperback
Here in one giant sized paperback book (supplied in a slipcase) is 2200 pages of the best of children's literature of the past 350 years. I suppose I should say this is one man's opinion of the best in literature because exchanging this title for that one could be the subject of many hours of discussion.

About many of the stories included, 'Peter Pan' for instance or Dr Seuss stories, I think there would be little argument. About others, I would like this one, you would like that one. Remember though, we're limited to stories for which we can get rights or which are in the public domain, and to only a couple of thousand pages.

All in all, here's a summertime of reading. Some 40 longer works, hundreds of shorter stories. 400+ illstrations including a color section. Highly recommended.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Maria C. Thomson on January 25, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've found NACL an outstanding reference book for specialists and students. I had never come across such complete collection of samples often hard, if not many times impossible, to find in my country. An uncommon added feature is the after purchase support offered by Norton and Norton which can be accessed via internet. Most helpful and useful for planning classes.

Maria C. Thomson

Argentina
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By mkb on January 18, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The contents of this book continue to be unsurpassed. However, the massive book is printed with a paper cover and very thin pages making it almost unreadable. It's easy to see, once it's in one's hands, why it has to be in a slipcase. This version would be better split into 2 or 3 slimmer volumes within the slipcase.
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14 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Dr. T on December 28, 2005
Format: Paperback
Fat +/-2,500 page book with very, very thin pages a few which might be too large and need trimming and a few pages may be crinkled and wrinkled...but still a good source to use if you are teaching children's literature in spite of The Missing Piece(s). I am curious and wonder the reasons why I didn't find any mention of the Rey's and their monkey, George, and especially surprised that there is NO mention of Shel Silverstein and his many classics which have sold in the millions. What 'kid' doesn't know Where The Sidewalk Ends, Light in the Attic, The Giving Tree, Lafcadio, the Lion Who Shot Back...and the extra special posthumously published and cleverly illustrated Runny Babbit (that ought to receive the Caldecott Medal!) Some other missing pieces that would have been very helpful would be a list of the Caldecott and Newbery Medal winners and runners-up.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Shelley E. Jacobsen on February 25, 2007
Format: Paperback
Although impressed with the breadth and quality of this anthology, as a children's librarian I was shocked to discover that any mention of Margaret Wise Brown is entirely missing. She is a seminal author in Anglo-American children's literature, so much so that even Yale University devoted an entire afternoon's lecture to her at a children's literature conference in 1999. Other, more recent and therefore much less classic or influential authors are included in this anthology; therefore, surely there is room for Wise Brown as well. Other than this rather gaping hole, this is a fine representation of the body of children's literature through the centuries with well-written historical remarks.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Any Norton's Anthology of Literature is wonderfully extensive, and this Children's Literature edition is no exception. The book ranges from early Puritan literature to modern stories that are great for children. I would recommend this book for parents who wish to pass a tradition of reading to their kids.

(The reviewer was compensated for posting this review. However, the opinion stated in the review is that of the reviewer and the reviewer alone. Further, the reviewer independently selected this product to review and has no affiliation with the product maker/distributor, Amazon or the review requester.)
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Format: Paperback
This is a great book for someone wanting a more complex addition of Children's Literature. This book is FULL of stories, unlike others I've read, these stories are not the childish ones you have been read in the past. The detail is great. I would not recommend you read these stories to young children, the stories are full of so much detail, it does make them quite long.
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