[xmca] of possible interest to xmca-sters

From: Peter Smagorinsky <smago who-is-at uga.edu>
Date: Thu Dec 06 2007 - 13:24:52 PST

International Journal of Equity and Innovation in Early Childhood Vol 5, No
2, 2007 5

Queering early childhood practices: Opening up possibilities with
common children's literature

Jill Hermann-Wilmarth, Assistant Professor,
Department of Teaching, Learning, and Leadership, Western Michigan
University, Kalamazoo, Michigan

Mariana Souto-Manning, Assistant Professor,
Department of Child & Family Development, The University of Georgia, Athens,


Abstract The field of early childhood education has historically
recommended best practices (Gomby, Larner, Stevenson, & Lewit, 1995;
McDonnell & Hardman, 1988), while more transformative approaches suggest
deconstructing such models (Cannella, 1997; Swadener & Lubeck, 1995) through

the exploration of culturally-relevant perspectives. While these
perspectives allow us to address some multicultural issues, we propose that
by queering such practices, we can develop more fluid understandings that
can open up possibilities for practice in the field of early childhood
education. In this paper, we use the folktale The Three Little Pigs to
expose ways in which generalized identity categories can be shifted and
destabilized-queered. We suggest that an analysis of three very different
retellings of these stories through the lens of queer theory can be
extrapolated to an analysis of three different approaches to early childhood

education. Through the study of three children's literature texts, we
explore the possibilities of queering early childhood practices and draw
implications for opening up possibilities and embracing social justice in
the early childhood context. Congruent with the best practices model of
early childhood education, Walt Disney's Three Little Pigs (Disney,
1933/1948) follows the traditional tale with the wolf eating the first two
pigs after he blows down their houses, and the third pig surviving because
he used the best home building materials. The True Story of the 3 Little
Pigs (Scieszka, 1989) and The Three Pigs (Wiesner, 2001) bring a variety of
perspectives to the tale-first through the eyes of the wolf who claims that
he was "framed", and second, through the eyes of empowered pigs who exit the

traditional tale and create a new story with the wolf watching the
dragon-protected three pigs from a safe distance-inviting the creation of
new stories and altered realities. Through the use of queer theory to
analyse these children's books we seek to illuminate new possibilities for

attached mail follows:

Dear Jill and Mariana,

Thank you for your contribution to our 2nd Edition of IJEIEC for
2007. I have attached a pdf copy of the journal, as well as a copy of
your article.

Best regards

Kate Alexander
Cluster/Centre Administrator - Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday am
Research Assistant - Wednesday pm, Thursday & Friday
Centre for Equity and Innovation in Early Childhood (CEIEC)
Elizabeth Murdoch East
The Faculty of Education
The University of Melbourne
Parkville VIC 3010
Phone: 613 8344 7780
Fax: 613 9347 9380

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Received on Thu Dec 6 13:32 PST 2007

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