Deutschland, Österreich, Osteuropa, England, Belgien und Frankreich
Edited By Hans-Heino Ewers-Uhlmann
Football or fight? The little Great War in Flanders Fields. The image of World War I in Flemish children’s books 1970–2014
This article gives an overview of Flemish children’s books on World War I published between 1973 and 2014. It is based on a text analysis, focussing on the informative, divertive, emotional and moral functions. Information is inherent to the genre: the author takes the readers back into a period they are not familiar with. However, in order to keep the readers captivated, authors deploy the divertive function, with humour and suspense as the most important seducers. The analysis reveals how suspense is worked out in the stories. Dealing with the emotional function, the study identifies which means the authors use to enhance the chances of possible identification and empathy. Referring to the moral function, I studied the war ‘image’ or ‘frame’ constructed by the novels, analysing the selection of facts, the characters’ attitudes and linguistic markers or framing devices that reveal the author’s attitude or commitment to the topics dealt with in the text. In the conclusion constants and evolutions in the complex of functions are interpreted by situating them in a social-cultural context.
A German daredevil enters the no man’s land that separates the two armies. In no time the enemies celebrate Christmas together with sausage, schnapps and a game of soccer. Frank finds in the German Johannes Bremer the friend he is missing. Would he dare to dream that this peace and friendship can last? HERMAN VAN CAMPENHOUT has based this haunting and poignant book on true events. A book about...
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