In this class, students will be introduced to the scholarly field of children's literature and culture while considering books written for children during the golden age of Children's fiction (1890-1939). The dominant paradigm of Children's literature written before World War Two is instruction and delight, a schema that implies the juxtaposition of politics and pleasure in children's texts. Children's literature is unique in English and cultural studies because it is a genre written for children by adults. As such, children's texts reveal a great deal about the assumptions adults make about what children ought to read, think, and know. This class will revolve around three overriding questions: What does it mean to say that a book is for children? What pleasures do Children's books offer their implied readers? How do these texts address ideologically fraught topics like gender, belonging, and colonialism?