Rachel Davies,Barbara Gribling

Pasts at play

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This collection brings together scholars from disciplines including Children’s Literature, Classics, and History to develop fresh approaches to children’s culture and the uses of the past. It charts the significance of historical episodes and characters during the long nineteenth-century (1750–1914), a critical period in children's culture. Boys and girls across social classes often experienced different pasts simultaneously, for purposes of amusement and instruction. The book highlights an active and shifting market in history for children, and reveals how children were actively involved in consuming and repackaging the past: from playing with historically themed toys and games to performing in plays and pageants. Each chapter reconstructs encounters across different media, uncovering the cultural work done by particular pasts and exposing the key role of playfulness in the British historical imagination.
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437 printed pages
Original publication



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