Social Issues In Hana's Suitcase And The Paper Bag Princess

1544 Words7 Pages
We live in a society based on labels and unspoken social norms of conduct, which, whether we like it or not, affect our everyday life. The constant friction between individual thinking, and our instinctive desire to be part of society, consequently creates social issues. Our modern society is so immersed in social issues, to the point in which these issues have become part of our daily life; thus, causing people to acclimatize to these, rather than questioning them. It is, therefore, no wonder that social issues are often addressed in literature. Children’s literature in particular, being the main literary medium through which the younger generation can be influenced, has the responsibility to touch upon these issues, in order to encourage children to develop their own critical thinking, so as to understand and consequently prevent further issues. Both Karen Levine’s Hana’s Suitcase: a true story, and Robert Munsch’s The Paper Bag Princess, are great examples of the way in which children’s literature attempts to convey complex social issues in an original and entertaining manner, which will help their readers understand the key message embedded in the story. In spite of their difference in literary genre, Hana’s Suitcase: a true story and The Paper Bag Princess (non-fiction and fiction respectively), both stories deal with serious social issues. Hana’s Suitcase: a true story, in particular, deals with a rather difficult issue, being: ‘discrimination based on ethnicity’ in
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