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Raising Your Kids Right: Children's Literature and American Political Conservatism
by Michelle Ann Abate
Rutgers University Press, 2011
Cloth: 978-0-8135-4798-5 | Paper: 978-0-8135-5173-9 | eISBN: 978-0-8135-8199-6
Library of Congress Classification PS228.P6A23 2010
Dewey Decimal Classification 810.93581

Dr. Seuss's classic character the Lorax has delighted children for decades while passing along a powerful message about environmental responsibility. The book's young readers, and their parents, would likely be surprised by the emergence of a new character, Truax, a kindly logger created by a longtime employee of the wood products industry, who, not surprisingly, has a far different viewpoint to share. Yet the Truax character, and the book of the same name, is just one example of a growing genre of conservative-themed narratives for young readers spawned by the continuing strength of the American political right.

Highlighting the works of William Bennett, Lynne Cheney, Bill O'Reilly, and others, Michelle Ann Abate brings together such diverse fields as cultural studies, literary criticism, political science, childhood studies, brand marketing, and the cult of celebrity. Raising Your Kids Right dispels lingering societal attitudes that narratives for young readers are unworthy of serious political study by examining a variety of texts that offer information, ideology, and even instructions on how to raise kids right, not just figuratively but politically.
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