From Aesop to Harry Potter

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Front cover detail from "Children's Literature" by Seth Lerer
Front cover detail from "Children's Literature" by Seth Lerer

Bedtime stories are booming. Even in our hi-tech, hi-speed times, children's books are the most profitable segment of the publishing world.

And perhaps it's no surprise: Across cultures and centuries, we?ve always had literature for kids. From Aesop's Fables to medieval "primers" to tales of Robin Hood and Robinson Crusoe, Mother Goose and Harry Potter.

These stories have taught children how to read, how to behave, how to deal with an uncertain world that goes bump in the night.

This hour, On Point: A new history of children's literature, and what it tells us about growing up.Guests:
Seth Lerer, professor of English and comparative literature at Stanford University and author of "Children's Literature: A Reader's History from Aesop to Harry Potter."
The Washington Post reviews Seth Lerer's book

This program aired on July 2, 2008.


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