HUM 300

Children's Literature: To Teach and to Entertain

This course focuses on rhymes, fables, and fairy tales'traditional literature parents often still read to their young children, and much of which serves both to teach and to entertain (docet et delectat, the Latin dictum). Almost without fail, most collections of nursery rhymes, fables, or fairy tales (indeed most children's books) have usually been accompanied by illustrations of remarkable aesthetic power. The course commences with a study of the fable as literary form and the Aesopica, followed by a study of tales based on the oral tradition (and of more modern derivation) and the subsequent retelling or butchering of such tales by Disney. Finally, students explore the relationship between text and image in illustrated versions of Mother Goose rhymes from the semiotic perspective'based on reading of works by the American philosopher C.S. Peirce.