Er fagbøger en del af børnelitteraturen?
Is non-fiction also a part of children’ literature? In recent decades, children’s literature researchers have only considered fiction children’s literature (Maria Nikolajeva 1998 and Torben Weinreich 2004), and certain younger researchers has shown a tendency to write about experimental books by prize-winning authors (Bodil Kampp 2002). Very few researchers have shown an interest in non-fiction for children, and the consequence is that a great many publications for children have been overlooked. In the Nordic countries, Nina Goga’s doctoral thesis from 2008 is the only exception from this exclusive definition of children’s literature. In this article, I present a definition of children’s literature that includes non-fiction. In this definition, literature means ‛something written’ after ‛litera’ (Latin: letter). The purposes of the article are, on the one hand, to discuss different definitions and characteristics of non-fiction for children, and on the other hand to identify ways to analyze these books as literature for children. The article includes a discussion of a series of books about zoology by the Danish author Bent Jørgensen and the illustrator Birde Poulsen. One book in particular is discussed as an example of contemporary non-fiction and that is Om natten (In the Night, 2005). This book is subjected to analytical tools from literature studies, and one of the points is that non-fiction should be interpreted and described through a textanalytical approach.
Keywords: definitions of children’s literature, children’s literature research, non-fiction for children, analysis of children’s literature
Authors contributing to Barnboken: Journal of Children's Literature Research agree to publish their articles under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported, allowing third parties to share their work (copy, distribute, transmit) and to adapt it, under the condition that the authors are given credit, that the work is not used for commercial purposes, and that in the event of reuse or distribution, the terms of this license are made clear.
Authors retain copyright of their work, with first publication rights granted to the Swedish Institute for Children's Books.