Gazing Forward, Not Looking Back: Comfort Food without Nostalgia in the Novels of Polly Horvath

  • Kara K. Keeling
  • Scott Pollard
Keywords: food, sensory, nostalgia, comfort

Abstract

Conventionally, children are depicted finding comfort in the sensory appeal of food, as part of experiences that eventually will become sources of adult nostalgia. Polly Horvath’s novels provide narratives that depict the creation of such moments without the accompanying nostalgia. This essay analyzes two of Horvath’s most successful and food-focused novels, Everything on a Waffle and The Canning Season, using the disciplinary and theoretical frames of children’s literature, food studies, social science research on comfort food as well as literary scholarship on nostalgia and on Proust’s À la recherche du temps perdu, pursuing a counter-argument to the conventional view of children’s literature as a locus of nostalgia.

Author Biographies

Kara K. Keeling

Kara K. Keeling is a professor of English at Christopher Newport University, where she teaches children’s and young adult literature. She co-edited, with Scott Pollard, Critical Approaches to Food in Children’s Literature (Routledge, 2009) and co-authored, with Marsha Sprague, Discovering a Voice: Engaging Adolescent Girls with Young Adult Literature (International Reading Association, 2007). She and Scott Pollard are engaged in a book-length study of food and children’s literature.

Scott Pollard

Scott Pollard is a professor of English and Comparative Literature at Christopher Newport University, where he teaches world literature and literary theory. He co-edited, with Kara Keeling, Critical Approaches to Food in Children’s Literature (Routledge, 2009), and the two are co-authoring a book-length study of food and children’s literature. He guest-edited an issue of Children’s Literature Association Quarterly (Fall 2013) dedicated to disability, and he co-edited, with Margarita Marinova, a translation of Mikhail Bulgakov’s Don Kikhot (MLA, 2014).

Published
2014-05-13
How to Cite
Keeling, K., & Pollard, S. (2014). Gazing Forward, Not Looking Back: Comfort Food without Nostalgia in the Novels of Polly Horvath. Jeunesse: Young People, Texts, Cultures, 6(1). Retrieved from http://jeunessejournal.ca/index.php/yptc/article/view/167
Section
Articles for Special Issue on Consumption