UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Rendering the visible world : a critical examination of internalization, representation, order, and naming in a selection of contemporary metafictive alphabet books LeMoal, Lara Lise


This study seeks answer the question of what metafictive alphabet books offer outside of the aim of literacy education. The alphabet picturebook is often treated as irrelevant beyond its didactic purpose due to its seemingly transparent nature. Because alphabet books exist in theory as a purposive tool to aid in the learning of literacy skills, other attributes of alphabet books are overlooked. The relationships between signs and symbols found in conceptual alphabet picturebooks are complex and worthy of close examination. This research investigates how the four inherent functions of alphabet books (internalization, representation, order and naming) work in contemporary, non-traditional, metafictive alphabet picturebooks. The research uses a close reading of four primary texts utilizing a theoretical framework centred in the poetics of alphabetization. This study explores the ways in which the apparent simplicity of the alphabet picturebook masks its underlying structures, and how those structures contribute to our understanding of language.

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