Reading List

Prospective applicants please note: do see for further information on how and why to apply to the M(Res.) in Children’s Literature at the University of Reading the CIRCL web-page on how to apply.

A note on the buying and finding of texts

Over time we have had many requests for reading lists from both prospective students of the M(Res.) in Children’s Literature in the Department of English of Reading University and other, generally interested, people. Some people wish to see reading lists to get a more detailed idea of the content of the M(Res.) in Children’s Literature at Reading, perhaps with the aim of applying for the course, while others have already applied, and would like to buy books in advance or start doing some reading to prepare for the course.

Please note that prospective students may wish to check with us which books it may be useful for them actually to buy and/or read as course preparation: students should be aware that – as with any reading lists – course materials vary over time and are used to differing extents during an actual course. In the past, some students have gone out and bought books in advance, despite this warning, and then been frustrated that they were not actually used on the course, so don’t buy without asking us, unless you are prepared to take this risk!

One further note: unfortunately, specialist books in children’s literature tend to go out of print rather quickly. Because they are essential, however, we include them here, but getting hold of them may involve being prepared to hunt through libraries, share books, or scour second hand bookshops! For the MA in Children’s Literature at Reading we make sure that we hold sufficient copies of these out-of-print materials for our students in our Reading University library at the Whiteknights campus or at the Special Collections at the University archives at the Museum of English Rural Life. Remember also to use the resources of the internet further: take a look, for instance, at our CIRCL Other Interesting Sites web-page.

If you are looking for second hand texts, useful links to second hand-bookstores or internet delivery and/ or book search companies include

Amazon

Abe books

Jubilee Books

Some course texts are available on the Web:

J. J. Rousseau, Emile

Mrs Sherwood, The Fairchild Family

Classics for Young People (this is a site on ‘The Children’s Literature Web Guide’ (see on the ‘Other Sites’ page), with a large range of classic children’s texts on the web: this link takes you directly there. For the rest of the site, click on the link listed on the ‘Other Sites’ page).

Kipling’s ‘Just So Stories’.

For a wider audience too we hope these lists may help to provide a guide for their own reading in the rapidly developing and exciting field of Children’s Literature Studies. Enjoy your reading!

M(Res.) in Children’s Literature Reading Lists

The three core modules — Theory of Children’s Literature, Nineteenth Century Children’s Literature, and Twenty- and Twenty-first Century — are obligatory, and consist of twenty weeks of one-hour classes.

Three options modules (ten weeks of one hour classes for each course) are selected from the several possibilities available by the students themselves before the start of each academic year.

Core modules

Theory of Children’s Literature Studies Core Course (tutor: Professor Karin Lesnik-Oberstein)

Twentieth Century Children’s Literature Core Course (convener: Dr Sue Walsh)

Nineteenth Century Children’s Literature Core Course (convener: Dr Neil Cocks)

Optional modules

Myth and Folktale in Children’s Literature Options Course (convener: Professor Karin Lesnik-Oberstein)

North American Children’s Literature Options Course (convener: Dr Sue Walsh)

Children’s Film, Television and Radio Options Course (convener: Dr Neil Cocks)

Popular Forms of Children’s Fiction Options Course (convener: Dr Neil Cocks)

Colonial and Post-Colonial Children’s Fiction Options Course (convener: Dr Sue Walsh)

For a list of past MA dissertations see the MA dissertations page.

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