This analysis examines gender representations found in children’s picture books through a symbolic interactionist perspective, employing conceptual ideas produced by West and Zimmerman (1987) and West and Fenstermaker 1995). Through a qualitative content analysis of 20 picture books from the past 15 years, I examine how gender is portrayed through both human and animal characters. I find that children’s picture books reflect our patriarchal society as they are male-centered, male-dominated, and male-identified (Johnson 2014). Children’s picture books depict patriarchal gender portrayals and provide children with examples of gender performances that satisfy patriarchal gender norms. This research has implications beyond books; it reflects the damaging and limiting cultural representations of gender that children learn at very young ages.
Heather Von Bank
Date of Degree
Master of Arts (MA)
Sociology and Corrections
Social and Behavioral Sciences
Pospisil, Kendra Leigh, "Examining Early Childhood Gender Socialization Through Children’s Picture Books" (2016). All Theses, Dissertations, and Other Capstone Projects. 610.
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