Figure 1.--There is a great wealth of literature about British school boys. One of the best known is Jennings--a prep school boy. The author was Anthony Buckeridge ho wrote a series of hilarious books. This dust jacket was from a 1967 edition. The illustrator was Mays. Image courtesy of theAM collection.
There is a great deal of fashion information in literature. As it is literature and not actual history, the comments on clothing have to be taken with caution. Authors vary as to how accurately they write about fashion and other historical cultural matters used to flesh out their plots and characters. Of course the most reliable fashion references are those in contemprary works. There are various types of literature of interest to HBC. We note useful information in both novels and children literature. Of special interest to HBC is the large number of boy characters in British literature. Of course one helpful aspect of many books are the often fascinating literature.
There is a great deal of fashion information in literature. As it is literature and not actual history, the comments on clothing have to be taken with caution. Authors vary as to how accurately they write about fashion and other historical cultural matters used to flesh out their plots and characters. Of course the most reliable fashion references are those in contemprary works.
There are various types of literature of interest to HBC. We note useful information in both novels and children literature.
There is a great deal of interesting fashion information in English novels. This inforatin is especially interesting to HBC bcause of the importance of England in the fashion world. While France has played an central role in women's fashions, ngland has been very important in setting men's fashions. There are useful refrence to fashion in novels for the simple reason that fashion is important to people. Novels are all about descriing the human condition. Thus novelists have to address what is important to people. Of course a major part of any novel is developing the character of the key people in the novel. Of course many people express their character in the clothes they choose. In other instances clothes are determined by the circumstances in which they find themselves.
There is also a great deal of fashion information in biographies and autobiographies. This information tends to be highly reliable. We have archieved this infomation in the biography section of HBC. We do not yet, however, have a separate English biograohy section.
Perhaps no county has a richr heritage of children's literature than England. Som of the earlist important children's books were English. Today the Harry Potter phenomenon is of course English. There were also many popular annuals and monthly publications with stories by lesser know authors. Much of this literature in the late and early 20th century was aimed at boys from comfortable if not affluent families. The standard was often boys attending expensive private schools. Since World War II (1939-45) the focus of English children's
literature has change markedly and the target audience broadened considerably. We also note different kind of publications. There were monthly and annual as well as omnibus publications which might combine stories, comics, and activity suggestions. The authors (including Richmal Crompton, J.M. Barie, Enid Blyton, A.A. Milne, J.R. Rollings, and others) and illustrators of some of these books are often known around.
Of special interest to HBC is the large number of boy characters in British literature. Many famous liteary characters are boys. A few novels are set around their boyhood experiences. Some of the first known boyhood literary characters, and some of
the most beloved, are English. Many figures in English literature have indeed emerged as some of the most famous boy characters in English literature (William Brown,
Peter Pan, Christopher Robin, Jennings, and others).
Of course one helpful aspect of many books are the often fascinating illustrations.
A very important part of any children' books are the illustrations. Many of us adults can remember missing the declining use of illustrations in books as we grew up.
There are many fine English illustrators who added emensely to the books that they illustrated. HBC has collected quite a bit of information on illustrators who have
drawn images of children over the years. The earliest illustrator of children's images is probanly Kate Greenway and her classisal drawings.Some of the best known
illustrators of children's books are English illustrators. This is in part because they illustrated many books which became classics such as Alice in Wonderland, Peter
Pan, Peter Rabbit, the Christoher Robin/Winnie the Poo books, Wind in the Willows, and other classics. Of course their beautiful drawings helped to make these
books the classivs that they became.
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