What an egocentric title! I’ve been reading Nodelman and Riemer’s The Pleasures of Children’s Literature all day (well, except for a brief interlude into L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time, which, by the way, I think is fascinating because 1) I reeeeeally want to know where Mr. Murry is and 2) Meg’s relationship with Calvin… just how old is Meg anyhow? Yikes, I digress…) so I’ve been thinking a lot about the way some adults assume that children are egocentric…

I’ve read many parts of Pleasures but this is the first time I’m going straight through… I’m supposed to have read chapters 1, 2, and 8 for my Continuing Classics in Children’s Literature course, but after skimming through the Table of Contents I really believe I can maximize the wealth of knowledge within the book (thank you, Nodelman and Reimer!) by reading the whole book in order. And doing the “Explorations.” Of which I’ve done… about half. Maybe.

Anyway, that’s why the title of this blog is “welcome to the world of spark.” Does that mean I’m egocentric? Eeks, I sure hope not. 

What else do I want to write about tonight? It’s 12:29 am and I’m supposed to be in bed and resting up for worship tomorrow morning. But I’m not.

Instead, I’m thinking that I’d really like to finish reading 90 more pages of Pleasures and find out where Mr. Murry is, and what happens between Meg and Calvin.

I’m also thinking that I really should have read A Wrinkle in Time when I was young. But I’m still young… relatively speaking.

And… I want to buy Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret for my 7th grade cousin. I heard there’s a newer version that modernizes some of the text, especially the text regarding feminine hygiene products, but IMHO I think keeping the original text is better because it reflects the time period in which it was written.

I bought the children’s version of Eats, Shoots and Leaves today. Hilarious. I highly recommend it. I also highly recommend the original.

Wait, so who am I? This past summer I taught Korean/Korean American culture at a Korean adoptee culture camp in Minnesota, and I began the first day by describing who I was. In no particular order: a Korean American, female, US citizen, daughter, sister, friend, Presbyterian Christian, graduate student, California resident expatriate in Champaign, Illinois. Yes, that’s right folks, I traded the sunny beaches of Los Angeles for the flat plains of central Illinois. But that’s the sacrifice one must make to study under the wisdom of Betsy Hearne, Christine Jenkins, Deborah Stevenson, Debbie Reese, Karla Moller, and of course Violet Harris, with whom I’m taking the Continuing Classics in Children’s Literature course this semester. A totally manageable sacrifice, given the wealth of knowledge and resources here.

Speaking of resources, I have the best cohort anyone could ask for. My friends study really interesting aspects of children’s literature and library services. I’ve never been in a place that was so supportive and nurturing. It’s not just that we do children’s lit/services related research… something about GSLIS and some of other programs here (Ed, C&I) is truly amazing in the way that people love to work together, encourage one another, and help each other find good answers to really provocative and important questions. It’s an academic utopia.

Enough thinking for today. Good night, world :o)

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