Poetry and Childhood is the first academic book to give serious critical attention to the poetry of childhood. This international volume brings together poets including Philip Gross, Andrew Motion and Michael Rosen – the latter both former Laureates – and distinguished critics such as Teresa Cremin, Peter Hunt, Lissa Paul, David Rudd, Chip Sullivan, Laura Tosi, and Victor Watson.

The collection is based on a prestigious conference organized by Morag Styles for the British Library and the Cambridge Faculty of Education. Contributors of international renown look at the key poets of childhood from the past, including John Bunyan, Robert Louis Stevenson, A.A. Milne, Ted Hughes and Charles Causley, and at the poetry for children by present Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy. They consider the major traditions and forms of poetry, take a new look at comic verse, develop fresh perspectives on nature as a central theme, and celebrate the importance of poetry as an oral medium. The voices of children, poets, parents and teachers responding to poetry are featured throughout.


Though primarily aimed at scholars and teachers of children’s literature, this collection is for everyone who is interested in poetry or children.


"This collection of essays asks important questions about the nature of poetry for children, and provides a host of illuminating answers. It aalso confirms the strength and variety of recent writers in the field, paying proper respect to their originality, as well as to the ways they extend a distinguished and fascinating tradition."

Andrew Motion


"With the calibre of contributors and the range of topics covered, this volume looks set to be the definative work on poetry and childhood for the foreseeable future."

Roger Walshe, Head of Learning - , The British Library

Poetry and Childhood

  • Edited by Morag Styles, Louise Joy and David Whitley

    Published by Institute of Education Press 2010 

    ISBN: 9781858564722


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