Children’s Literature vs. Nationalism: IRSCL’s Statement of Principles

The International Research Society for Children’s Literature (IRSCL) – an organization of which I am a member – is today issuing a statement in support of academic freedom, and against the rising tide of nativism/nationalism that threatens to curtail it.  We’re issuing it in 20 different languages (with more to come) and you can see

Constance J. Foster, This Rich World: The Story of Money, illustrated by Crockett Johnson (McBride, 1943): front cover

Crockett Johnson Tells the Story of Money

Today is the 111th birthday of Crockett Johnson (1906-1975). To celebrate, let’s take a deep dive in his oeuvre – looking at one of his lesser-known books, This Rich World. The popular story is that Crockett Johnson began creating books for children when he illustrated Ruth Krauss’s The Carrot Seed (1945). This is a compelling

Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss Biography. Appendix B: We Are for Wallace

At the risk of further alienating this blog’s modest readership, here is the second of four appendices cut from The Purple Crayon and a Hole to Dig: The Lives of Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss (forthcoming from University Press of Mississippi, 2012).  As is true of Appendix A, this one also registers Johnson’s alliance with

The Trauma Games

War is hell.  If General Sherman (and, I expect, many others) hadn’t said it first, I suspect Suzanne Collins might have chosen those three words as a subtitle for her Hunger Games trilogy.  As its predecessors did, Mockingjay dramatizes the physical and emotional consequences of war.  It’s especially adept at displaying the scars invisible to those of