Literature for children and teenagers


October 28, 2021

Literature for children and adolescents - fiction created with children and adolescents in mind, as well as the literature they choose to read. There are some features of such literature that differ to some extent from "adult" literature. It is primarily about choosing the content and form in such a way that it corresponds to the needs and tastes of this group of recipients, with authors creating this type of literature usually paying attention to the fact that their works exhibit certain educational and educational values. Values ​​ Literature for children and adolescents usually has value: educational - conflicts between the main characters are based on a clearly outlined opposition of desired, or "positive", and undesirable, or "negative" actions; the purpose of such an approach is to develop in the young reader the ability to distinguish between good and evil; in literature for children and adolescents, good prevails almost without exception, while evil is punished; educational - various information about the world is interwoven into the plot, it can be e.g. geographic information (in a travel novel), historical (in a historical novel), ethnographic (e.g. information on Indian tribes in Alfred Szklarski's novels), etc. in texts written for children and adolescents to varying degrees. They may or may not be included in them, as there are also a number of works that are almost exclusively entertaining and do not have educational or tutorial ambitions.


The beginnings of literature written for young readers date back to the 18th century. Previously, such literature did not exist, young people read the same books as adults, but at most parents and guardians supervised the choice of readings. Even fairy tales and fairy tales were written for adults. And although books written exclusively for children and adolescents had not been written before, quite often texts "for adults" were prepared in such a way that they could be used by the youngest readers. Such a study consisted, for example, in shortening the basic text, removing descriptions that slowed down an attractive action, removing elements considered "non-pedagogical", ie related to the sexual sphere. The changes could possibly consist in shaping the work in such a way as to emphasize educational elements (i.e., for example, emphasizing patriotism, courage and other features that were considered desirable in young readers). It is also worth paying attention to the way literature for children and adolescents functions, because many texts, considered to be youthful today (and indeed liked to be read by such readers), could have been addressed to adult readers in the past and only later were 'adapted' and accepted, also in the general consciousness, by children and adolescents. A good example is the work of Jules Verne. Many of his novels were written as "adult" texts promoting scientific and geographical discoveries, etc., but due to their attractive form, they quickly gained acceptance from younger readers.

17th century

One of the first novels that particularly appealed to young readers' tastes is Don Quixote (published in 1605 and 1615) by the Spanish writer Miguel Cervantes. This novel presents the title Don Quixote as a knight errant who experiences a lot of sometimes quite absurd adventures. He is accompanied by Sancho Panza, a faithful squire, the epitome of common sense, cunning and cunning. The novel became the basis for numerous stage and film adaptations. Several animated films addressed directly to children were also created on the basis of the novel. Into Polish

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