Last Monday, I was fortunate enough to see part of the children’s literature collection at the Lilly Library here in Bloomington. The Lilly has an amazing collection of rare books, and it’s always fun to see the treasures they bring out for various events. This particular session was all about the evolution of literature for children who were seen as tiny adults needing life instruction to children who wanted to be entertained.
The earliest examples laid out for us were horn books with the alphabet on one side and key words like dog, house, horse on the other. One mother even made instructional flash cards about the dangers of life.
As we got into the later examples of the literature—moving from straight instruction to entertainment—we were shown books like this Newberry edition of Mother Goose and this tiny boxed library set of stories.
My favorites, however, were seeing items like Beatrix Potter’s Peter Rabbit.
And the absolute best was seeing the original manuscript for Peter Pan. What a treat!
If you ever find yourself in Bloomington, Indiana, definitely stop by the Lilly! Not only will they be able to show you amazing gems from their collection, but you’ll learn a lot too.
“By focusing purely on the objects and colour palette of the film, I see the posters as providing an interesting and fresh perspective on the film’s themes and characters even for someone who has seen the film many times.”
Imagine the stories these bog bodies could tell! With advancements in science, we are able to piece together more and more of their secrets.
Guilty pleasures are a fact of life. Sometimes we need to unwind in ways that don’t necessarily seem as sophisticated or intellectual as we hope the world sees us. My guilty pleasures are:
Lots of television
Falling asleep on the couch
Last night, my husband and I watched the movie Deadpool for probably the 20th time. Not joking. There’s a very good reason I like this movie, though—the writing is spot on. I enjoy this movie because it is clever—from the structure to the character introduction to the musical themes. And as I watch it, I am completely engrossed in the story and the jokes. It is a welcome break from life’s daily stressors.
Don’t feel guilty about your guilty pleasures. Watch that sitcom or read that web comic. Guilty pleasures of art and stories (or, as in the case of my couch sleeping, rest) are important to lending balance to your sophisticated, intellectual side. Let your mind soak up that joy without trying to analyze it. Sometimes that’s when the magic happens and you come up with your next amazing story; sometimes nothing happens but relaxation. And that’s OK too.