What do children’s books reveal about age?

That’s what we’re trying to find out by means of literary research at the University of Antwerp. We’re looking at the age of the authors in our corpus, the age of the target audience and the age of actual readers. But we also explore the books themselves by considering the characters in the books and the statements made about age.


This project aims to encourage dialogue about age and to put the spotlight on the similarities and differences between people in all phases of life. More specifically, we would like find out which ideas can be discovered about age in British, Dutch and Flemish children’s books and how these ideas came about in the first place.

Authors

Does the age of the author have an impact?

Target Audiences

Do authors adjust the style and the contents of the book according to the age of the readership?

Readers

Do people of different ages read books differently?

Adaptations

What happens with views on age when children’s books are adapted into films, television programmes, stage plays, comics, or games?

We are researching 800 children’s books by means of different methods, such as computer programmes for digital text analysis, interviews with authors, and discussions with readers of different ages.

Would you like to contribute to this research?

We’re looking for participants.