Saturday, March 28, 2009


Children are not always escaping from the mundane, but from the horrific--from all kinds of strong, frightening feelings they have; they don't really mind a little anxiety and heart failure, so long as they know it will end all right. -Maurice Sendak

One of the most frightening, loveliest books will finally make it to the big screen this fall. (Thank you, Alisa, for sending me the trailer.)

From Maurice Sendak's 1964 acceptance speech for the Caldecott Medal:
Certainly we want to protect our children from new and painful experiences that are beyond their emotional comprehension and that intensify anxiety; and to a point we can prevent premature exposure to such experiences. But what is just as obvious--and what is too often overlooked--is the fact that from their earliest years children live on familiar terms with disrupting emotions, that fear and anxiety are an intrinsic part of their everyday lives, that they continually cope with frustrations as best they can. And it is through fantasy that children achieve catharsis. It is the best means they have for taming Wild Things. It is my involvement with this inescapable fact of childhood--the awful vulnerability of children and their struggle to make themselves King of all Wild Things--that gives my work whatever truth and passion it may have.

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