Sunday, October 21, 2012

Hidden Messages?

Something that was brought up in class this week was the possibility of hidden messages in some of the children's books that are being read today, when I was in kindergarten and 1st grade, and even before then. I thought that was so interesting because its definitely not a connection I have ever made before. When reading them as children, they come off as entertaining books with big pictures and a fun story along with that. I know that my parents often had to read my favorite books to me several times before going to bed. So after that being brought up in class, I decided to do a little research and see if any common children’s books had “secret” messages in them.
            I first looked at Dr. Seuss’ Wikipedia page. Dr. Seuss was one of the most popular children book authors, writing books such as Green Eggs and Ham and The Cat in the Hat. These may come off to children just as simple books but almost every book had a meaning attached to it. The Lorax was said to be about environmentalism and How the Grinch Stole Christmas about anti-consumerism. I wonder if these messages really are secret or if children really can pick up on them, they just don’t realize it.
            Another important and very popular book was Where the Wild Things Are. This book not only was banned in libraries for years after its release but was also named one of the Top 100 Picture Books of all Time. I know this was definitely one of my favorites growing up. I wonder if the secret messages in books and the banning of certain books is mainly an American thing to do? What do you think?

1 comment:

  1. I think putting alternative meanings, or "morals", into stories is a formula that's been used in storytelling for ages. Even the first biblical stories and myths have a lesson to be learned embedded inside. However, I think the banning of certain books is done less in other first world countries compared to America. Like it was mentioned in class, maybe it's because the Puritan values from America's first settlers still resonate today that our country is so restrictive on published books.