The Inter-Galactic Playground: A Critical Study of Children's and Teens' Science Fiction (Critical Explorations in Science Fiction and Fantasy)

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9780786435036: The Inter-Galactic Playground: A Critical Study of Children's and Teens' Science Fiction (Critical Explorations in Science Fiction and Fantasy)

Science fiction is often considered the genre of ideas and imagination, which would seem to make it ideal for juveniles and young adults; however, the ideas are often dispensed by adults. This book considers the development of science fiction for children and teens between 1950 and 2010, exploring why it differs from science fiction aimed at adults. In a broader sense, this critical examination of 400 texts sheds light on changing attitudes toward children and teenagers, toward science education, and toward the authors' expectations and sociological views of their audience.

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About the Author:

Farah Mendlesohn teaches science fiction and fantasy literature at Middlesex University in London. Donald E. Palumbo is a professor of English at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. He lives in Greenville. C.W. Sullivan III is also in the English department at East Carolina University.

Review:

It is always stimulating to read a book that challenges received wisdom in this case the facile assumption that young people do not enjoy fiction which also provides them with information. Basing her judgment on her own experience and a large-scale informal survey of sf readers, Mendlesohn recognizes a cohort of reading children who welcome the scientific knowledge that they can acquire from books such as those she identifies in her final chapter as demonstrating best practice in areas such as genre values and structure. An impressive feature of this work is the very extensive range of books discussed, making it an essential text for anyone researching this area. The treatment of gender is particularly interesting, and there is also an appendix dealing with picturebooks. The book is also very readable, combining critical flair with individual and often original perceptions --Pat Pinsent, Senior Research Fellow

"If there's anything you want to know about science fiction for children and young adults, you will find it here. Farah Mendlesohn is a tireless researcher and an engaging writer." --Pat Cadigan

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