Fear and Morality

Stories are more than entertainment; in every culture, throughout history, stories are educational. They define who we (as a culture) think we are--what we’ve done and what we value. Children’s stories are especially exemplary of this, because the first stories we tell our children take root in their minds most firmly, and, consequently, often impart our most fundamental values. With the value-prevalence of children’s stories in mind, and considering that Victorian England is known for its puritanical views of morality, I decided to seek themes of frightening children into moral behavior. 

Included in this exhibit are an overview of frightening children into morality in a historical context, a narrative on the history of Little Red Riding Hood, and ten digitized books from the University of Washington Libraries Special Collections' Historical Children's collection. For further resources and information, please visit the LibGuide on Fear and Morality.


Rose Frazier