Introduction

Caroline Jones

Abstract


In “Alice’s Academy” for this issue, Sarah Hardstaff explores a theme common in children’s literature: hunger, and its connections to child empowerment and disempowerment in society. Hardstaff crosses generic lines, looking at realistic fiction, dystopian fiction, and fairy tales as she explores the differing contexts of each, and how hunger and plenty affect the agency of protagonists as well as the hunger of the reader or hearer in differing circumstances. More specifically, she explores hunger as the driver of change, and the vehicle for protagonists to effect change in their lives and their worlds.

In this period of change and flux across the globe, Hardstaff’s exploration raises pertinent questions for us all: what change will we see in our world? For what do we hunger? How can we help ourselves, and children, to become drivers of that change? And, finally, how can we make hunger a thing of theory, not reality?

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The Looking Glass: new perspectives on children's literature

ISBN 1551-5680