books and gadgets

Noga Applebaum has participated in if:book salons and her research on how technology is portrayed in children's books is important and exciting - but the book costs a staggering £80.  I'm wondering if we could host an if:book experience around it. Hmm....

Representations of Technology in Science Fiction for Young People
Noga Applebaum, New York and Abingdon: Routledge, pb. 978 0 4159 8951 0, £80.00,
2010, 214pp.

Extract from a review by Pat Pinsent in the IBBY newsletter:

"It has been a matter for concern for some time that, in literature for young people,
computers and information technology in general appear often to be represented in a
negative way, reflecting adults’ ambivalence towards children’s interaction with the
internet and computer games. In this study, which involves the analysis of a very wide
range of post-1980 novels and short stories, digital fiction, films and computer games in
the context of an impressive list of theoretical works, Noga Applebaum finds evidence
to support this assertion, and confronts readers with the need for changing attitudes
towards technology...

'Applebaum voices her concern about the extent to which literature for young readers
displays a degree of technophobia, making more vivid the fears that adults hold of
technologies, which they see as dangerous rather than beneficial. Her meticulous and
thorough study has the well-justified closing words: ‘The gatekeepers of children’s
literature – parents, educators, authors and publishers – must come to terms with this
savvy audience by offering a wider range of literary perspectives on technology or
potentially face a further decline in the relationship between young people and the
printed book."


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