|See also:||Young Adult|
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Children's literature can be defined as stories that feature children as the protagonists, or are written for an audience of children and their parents.
A western tradition of children's literature did not really develop until the late Victorian era. Prior to that, children given books to read were given classics by authors such as Charles Dickens or Jane Austen that were not written specifically for children.
Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan are early examples that helped to popularise the genre. Frank L. Baum's Wizard of Oz, Eion Colfer's Artemis Fowl and J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter are all important examples.
Children's literature can be purely entertainment, or can be a morality tale where the child protagonist learns an important lesson that the child reading or being read to can also learn.
Fantastical elements often feature prominently, such as the mythical worlds of Wonderland, Neverland and Narnia, and creatures such as fairies, mermaids, witches and talking animals.
Children's Literature During Yuletide
Many different works and series of children's literature are well-represented in the Yuletide fanfiction exchange every year. There are roughly three sorts of categories these fall into. The first is fanfiction for well-known children's novels, either written as missing scenes or as post-novel stories (similar to episode tags). The second are stories based on picture books for very young children that maintain the framework and language of the original source, such as the stories written for Mo Willams' books about Elephant and Piggie. Finally, the third category are meta-stories that radically reimagine the original work, transposing it into another time or place; often these stories gain fame outside of fandom, because they are easily comprehensible to anyone who had originally read the work.
Even when they remain in the original universe, Yuletide stories often bring out a darker, more adult dimension in children's literature sources, for example, The Secret Garden stories that involve the First World War.
List of Fandoms Based on Children's Literature
The following is an incomplete list of fandoms on Fanlore that are based on children's literature. Note: What constitutes inclusion on this list may vary among fans.
- Alice in Wonderland
- The Chronicles of Narnia
- The Dark is Rising
- Grimm's Fairy Tales
- Hans Christian Andersen's Fairytales
- Harry Potter
- His Dark Materials
- The Hobbit
- Little Women
- Wizard of Oz