|previous article in this issue||next article in this issue|
Document Details :
Title: Van kind naar kinship
Subtitle: De constructie van leeftijd in de literatuuropvattingen van Bart Moeyaert in de loop van zijn schrijverschap
Author(s): JOOSEN, Vanessa
Journal: Spiegel der Letteren
Volume: 63 Issue: 1-2 Date: 2021
Intergenerational dialogue is central to children’s literature. According to Marah Gubar, the relationship between childhood and adulthood can be cast in terms of difference, deficit (stressing what children do less well) and kinship. In the course of his writing career, the Flemish children’s author Bart Moeyaert evolved from a discourse of difference and deficit to one of kinship. In adolescence and early adulthood, he presented himself as an expert on youth and even expressed mild disdain about his younger self. As he grew older, he shifted to a kinship model, stressing what children and adults share. The certainties associated with adulthood made way for an enduring searching attitude to life. Both Gubar and Moeyaert argue that viewing children and adults as fundamentally different increases the risk of unfounded generalisations. Fostering connections with youth, by contrast, can enrich adult perspectives with new experiences, including those offered by children’s books.