The Conversation Between Children's Literature and Child-Rearing

Graduation Year


Document Type

Senior Thesis


Bachelor of Arts

Primary Major

Literary and Intercultural Studies

Thesis Advisor

Amy Wong, PhD


Spanning the Silent Generation, Generation X/Y, and Generation Alpha, major changes in parenting techniques, and the value of children will be studied. These shifts in cultural and social norms around child-rearing practices are also reflected in children’s literature of the times. Incorporating evidence from works of popular child-rearing gurus from the generations studied, along with historical context of the time, will give further insight into children’s literature. At the same time, children’s literature of the generations will be examined to find out how children’s literature of the time is in conversation with historical and social practices of child-rearing in order to better understand how literature might intervene into our perspectives on what being a child means for different generations. American parenting shifted from rule-based parenting to gentle parenting to providing an environment of empathy, respect, and understanding while maintaining boundaries. How does children’s literature interplay with these cultural shifts in parenting?

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