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Document Details :

Title: De tomboys van Tine van Berken
Subtitle: Genderscripts in Een klaverblad van vier en De dochters van den generaal
Journal: Spiegel der Letteren
Volume: 63    Issue: 1-2   Date: 2021   
Pages: 19-37
DOI: 10.2143/SDL.63.1.3289316

Abstract :
Since children’s literature developed as a distinct form of literature in the second half of the eighteenth century, children’s authors and publishers have made a distinction between books for boys and girls. At the end of the nineteenth century, in particular girls’ fiction was criticised for representing a traditional gender script. Those critics seem to overlook books with protagonists who were rebellious and resisted the norms and rules that were imposed on girls at the time. Those tomboys as they were called appeared for the first time in Dutch children’s literature in books written by Tine van Berken. In this article, I explore the tomboy as a social-cultural and literary phenomenon and I read Van Berken’s novels against this background. I show that Van Berken does not emphasize one particular image of womanhood, but that instead she presents two images side by side, leaving the choice to identify with one of them to her readers.

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