”och mymlan flög / och mjölken for”

Barnläsarna och poesin i Tove Janssons bilderbok Hur gick det sen?

  • Johan Alfredsson
Keywords: poetry, picturebooks, Tove Jansson, attachment theory, child reader, iconicity, children’s poetry


The Child Readers and Poetry in Tove Jansson’s Picturebook The Book about Moomin, Mymble and Little My

Abstract: Tove Jansson’s picturebook Hur gick det sen? Boken om Mymlan, Mumintrollet och lilla My (The Book about Moomin, Mymble and Little My) from 1952 is a book which makes use of its material aspects in many regards, employing the interactivity of the picturebook format to its maximum. Given the fact that it is written in verse, and is considered a classic by all means, it is surprising to find that the function that poetry plays within the book has been scarcely explored in prior research. By examining how the format of this particular picturebook guides the manner in which the child reader experiences it, and by studying the function of poetry within that framework, the article shows that poetry potentially plays a vital role in how child readers make sense of it. In particular, the role of poetry manifests itself as an opportunity for child readers to – at their own pace, and in their own manner – deal with the delicate balance between the attachmentseeking struggles of the anxious character of Moomin, on the one hand, and the exploratory individuation of the adventurous character of Little My, on the other. Through these examinations, the article demonstrates how the use of poetry can facilitate an emancipatory opportunity for child readers within picturebooks – and how this potential is ever-present within the format and the reading situation of picturebooks for children in general. 

How to Cite
Alfredsson, J. (2021). ”och mymlan flög / och mjölken for”: Barnläsarna och poesin i Tove Janssons bilderbok Hur gick det sen?. Barnboken, 44. https://doi.org/10.14811/clr.v44.599
Tema: Poesi för barn och unga/ Theme: Poetry for Children and Youth