Defining Print Culture for Youth: The Cultural Work of Children's Literature

By Anne Lundin; Wayne A. Wiegand | Go to book overview

6
“BEING POOR DOESN'T COUNT”:
CLASS, ETHNICITY, AND DEMOCRACY IN
AMERICAN GIRLS' SCHOOL SERIES, 1900–1920

Kathleen Chamberlain

In the early 1920s, a couple named Mr. and Mrs. C. A. Walker purchased a copy of a mass-marketed juvenile series book entitled The Girls of Central High Aiding the Red Cross. The Walkers gave the volume as a gift to a girl called Georgia, memorializing the occasion with a verse inscribed on the flyleaf:

May you enjoy to read, “oh boy,”
The pranks of the Central High:
And profit by the lessons taught
In your habits, by and by.1

Despite their poetic limitations, these lines manage to describe the two main benefits that adults hope children will gain from such books: enjoyment and improvement. When speaking of the “lessons taught,” the Walkers no doubt had in mind the fairly obvious messages about respectable behavior and socially acceptable virtues that the authors of series such as “The Girls of Central High” built into their texts. But American girls' school series of the early twentieth century reflected other lessons as well, lessons that addressed contemporary cultural concerns about gender, ethnicity, and democracy. Directed primarily to a white middle-class audience, girls' secondary school fiction offered a print culture that modeled for readers the qualities they would need and the roles they would assume as middle-class proponents and protectors of a democratic American society. At the same time, however, the stories

-101-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Defining Print Culture for Youth: The Cultural Work of Children's Literature
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Introduction xi
  • 1: Reading and Re-Reading 1
  • 2: Communism for Kids 27
  • 3: Publishing Pride 41
  • 4: The Power of Black and White 61
  • 5: Defining Democracy for Youth Through Textbooks 77
  • 6: [Being Poor Doesn't Count] 101
  • 7: Turning Child Readers into Consumers 121
  • 8: Learning to Be a Woman 139
  • 9: Kate Chopin and the Birth of Young Adult Fiction 155
  • 10: Reading Nancy Drew in Urban India 169
  • Index 197
  • About the Editors and Contributors 203
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 206

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.