Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Literary Criticism General

Children and Childhoods in L.M. Montgomery

Continuing Conversations

edited by Rita Bode, Lesley D. Clement, E. Holly Pike & Margaret Steffler

McGill-Queen's University Press
Initial publish date
Oct 2022
General, Canadian
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2022
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2022
    List Price

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it


From Jane Austen to contemporary fanfiction and adaptations, literary portrayals of the child and imaginings of childhood are particularly telling indicators of cultural values and when they shift.

Inspired by the responsive reading practices of L.M. Montgomery herself, those demonstrated by her characters, and those of her diverse readership, Children and Childhoods in L.M. Montgomery works with concepts of confluence, based on organic, non-linear readings of texts across time and space. Such readings reconsider views of childhood and children by challenging power hierarchies and inequities found in approaches that privilege more linear readings of literary influence. While acknowledging differences between childhood and adulthood, contributors emphasize kinship between child and adult as well as between past and present selves and use both scholarly approaches and creative reimagining to explore how the boundaries between different stages of life are blurred in Montgomery’s writing.

Children and Childhoods in L.M. Montgomery addresses Montgomery’s challenges to prescribed assumptions about childhood while positioning her novels as essential texts in twenty-first-century literary, childhood, and youth studies.

Contributors include Yoshiko Akamatsu (Notre Dame Seishin University), Balaka Basu (UNC Charlotte), Rita Bode (Trent University), Holly Cinnamon, Lesley D. Clement, Vappu Kannas, Heidi Lawrence (University of Glasgow), Kit Pearson, Rosalee Peppard Lockyer, E. Holly Pike, Laura Robinson (Acadia University), Kate Scarth (UPEI), Margaret Steffler (Trent University), William Thompson (MacEwan University), Bonnie Tulloch (UBC), Asa Warnqvist (Swedish Institute for Children’s Books)

About the authors

Rita Bode, professor of English literature at Trent University, is co-editor, with Jean Mitchell, of L.M. Montgomery and the Matter of Nature(s), and with Lesley D. Clement of L.M. Montgomery’s Rainbow Valleys: The Ontario Years, 1911–1942.

Rita Bode's profile page

Lesley D. Clement is an independent scholar and co-editor of L.M. Montgomery’s Rainbow Valleys: The Ontario Years, 1911–1942.

Lesley D. Clement's profile page

E. Holly Pike, former associate professor of English at Memorial University of Newfoundland, is co-editor, with Laura M. Robinson, of L.M. Montgomery and Gender.

E. Holly Pike's profile page

Margaret Steffler is Professor of English Literature at Trent University where she teaches Canadian Literature. She has written journal articles on P. K. Page's work and edited Page's Mexican Journal (Porcupine's Quill, 2015).

Margaret Steffler's profile page

Editorial Reviews

“By presenting Montgomery’s fiction as conversing with past and present creative writers, contributors provide a helpful focal point within the broad framework of the collection, extending prior conceptual understandings of the cultural role of reading.” Irene Gammel, author of Looking for Anne: How Lucy Maud Montgomery Dreamed Up a Literary Classic

Other titles by Rita Bode

Other titles by Lesley D. Clement

Other titles by E. Holly Pike

Other titles by Margaret Steffler