Despite the importance of Children´s literature in Ecuador, little is known about works written in the last 15 years. In this paper I will discuss El sueño de Manuela (‘Manuela´s Dream’) by Edna Iturralde as a review of national history. In this process, I will use a theoretical framework developed by Maria Nikolajeva and Milena Mileva Blažić.
Fifteen years ago, children´s literature in Ecuador became the biggest selling book genre in the country. According to Girándula (Ecuadorian Association of Children's Book), five out of six fiction books sold in Ecuador belonged to children's literature. The huge difference has led to a so-called Ecuadorian “Boom” in children's literature noticeable by the increasing number of writers, readings in workshops and strong publisher´ investment. One of the most well-known authors is Edna Iturralde. Her book, El sueño de Manuela, is about Manuela Sáenz (1797-1856), a controversial figure in history.
Currently Ecuador is a country in a fast-changing political process that has caused a review of national history: since 2006, the government party, “Alianza País”, has sought to identify certain historical-cultural icons to participate in the actual Ecuadorian political process. Under these circumstances, Ecuadorian children's literature has found new themes connected to the remaking of history.
This eclectic study takes into account two main theoretical texts: From Mythic to Linear: Time in Children's Literature (1991), by Maria Nikolajeva, and "Children's Literature in South-East Europe" (2011), by Milena Mileva Blažić.
Wladimir Chavez, Østfold University College, Norway
This paper is part of the LibrAsia2013 Conference Proceedings (View)
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