Wednesday, December 09, 2009

The Problem with Picture Books

The Problem with Picture Books

This was from the letters to the Editor in the New Yorker and written by Nina Planck. I can't agree anymore.


Toasterchild said...

Oh, how many "creative writing" mentors I had in HS & college who poo-pooed anything that didn't indulge some pseudo-psychological nonsense. Sometimes a good story (told in words or pictures) is just that -- creative, amusing, fun. Maybe light, maybe serious -- but it's a story, not highbrow literature and that's so OK. For some odd reason, books (the profitable or critically acclaimed ones) are expected to be instructional, or inspirational, etc., but other forms of writing (think blockbuster screenplay) are just the opposite. The more fantastic, the more successful. I'm getting off track now...but I think the conventional wisdom is that books (for adults, kids, whatever) as a medium have some kind of expectation hoisted upon them that they're supposed to be instructional. And that's kind of not fair.

samantics said...

Could not begin to agree more. I am by no means a connoisseur of contemporary children's literature, but recently I remember being shocked how many books in the children's section weren't really about children whatsoever. Hopefully, we can return to letting children be children, and let them civilize over time, not treat childhood if it's a disease to be cured.