Honors Program

Honors in English

Date of Award


Thesis Professor(s)

Phyllis Thompson

Thesis Professor Department

Literature and Language

Thesis Reader(s)

Martha Michieka


When looking back through the last eighty years, one thing is certain: the socio-political climate has changed dramatically. From the beginning of the 20th century where racism and sexism was rampant to the beginning of the 21st century where equal rights and acceptance of all is becoming the norm, the climate has flipped throughout the last one hundred years. The question to then ask is how does the climate impact literature, specifically children’s literature. Research shows that children’s literature is impacted, but research does not describe how it is impacted. This thesis will work to qualify the quantitative research by explaining how the socio-political climate impacts children’s literature. By looking at three texts over the past eighty years, the qualitative analysis shows how children’s literature is impacted by the socio-political climate. The three texts that will be analyzed are And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street by Dr. Seuss (1937), Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak (1963), and Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty (2016).


East Tennessee State University

Document Type

Honors Thesis - Open Access

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


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