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Philip Nel
Attended Vanderbilt University
Lives in Manhattan, Kansas, U.S.A.
103 followers|9,891 views
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Philip Nel

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THE picture-book debut of 2015: Rowboat Watkins' Rude Cakes!
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Philip Nel

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Reflections from a white guy (me) who is writing about racism.
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Philip Nel

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Happy Pi Day from Nine Kinds of Pie!
Since this blog takes its name from an artist who wrote about pie and painted π (see last year's post), I try to offer a little tribute to this beloved irrational number each Pi Day. Today, at 9:26:53 am and pm (twice!), the date will spell out the first ten digits of the number.
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Philip Nel

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Unexpected discoveries: a new picture book from poet JonArno Lawson & artist Sydney Smith.
This picture book is a wordless poem, written by a poet yet rendered by an artist. If that description sounds like one of the philosophical questions posed by JonArno Lawson's poems (“can you remember / how you thought / before you / learned to talk?”), it should. Lawson conceived the book, ...
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Farewell, old friend.
George Nicholson died yesterday. He was 77 years old. He was a legend in children's publishing. George was in the children's literature business for over 50 years. In the 1960s, he introduced paperbacks to the children's book industry. That's something we take for granted now, but we owe it to ...
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"For Proust, it was the taste of madeleines and tea.  For me, it was the smell of crayons."
We tend to imagine the self as an unbroken whole, but it might better be described as plural, a series of selves that, though temporally contiguous (and often overlapping) are not always the “same” self. That's one of the conclusions suggested by Robert Krulwich in “Who Am I?,” a Radiolab ...
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Have him in circles
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Philip Nel

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They Might Be Giants' new record is the band’s best since its 1986 eponymous debut. 30 years later, they're — astonishingly — still making great music.
They Might Be Giants, “All the Lazy Boyfriends,” Glean (2015). They Might Be Giants' Glean — due out April 21 — is the band's best record since its 1986 eponymous debut, affectionately known as The Pink Album (due to its pink cover). Like that record, it has a range of musical styles, ...
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Philip Nel

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This sentence aspires to entice you to click on the link to this meta-mix (all songs about songs), lovingly curated for your enjoyment — and, of course, ripe for critique (in the comments, one might debate songs omitted, etc.).
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Happy Dr. Seuss's birthday! To celebrate, here are Six Seuss segments, including: 1930s advertising art (pictured), a page from the new book, and the Dr. Seuss Rap Quiz.
Today would be Dr. Seuss's 111th birthday! Actually, it is his 111th birthday, but Theodor Seuss Geisel is not around to celebrate it — he died in 1991, at the age of 87. In his honor, here are Six Spots of Seuss News …for all of you who yearn for Seuss. (For those who don't, I have no use: go ...
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Philip Nel

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The Kansas legislature is proposing legislation that prohibits university employees from “using such employee’s official title when authoring or contributing to a newspaper opinion column.” Here’s a question for the Kansas legislature: What makes you think those of us employed by Kansas universities would want to be identified as such? Given the state’s hostility towards freedom of inquiry and towards education at all levels, what advantage would a university employee gain in publicizing his or her academic affiliation?
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I suspect it also may be related to Governor Cutback's lies about his budget, and decision to pay for his tax giveaways to wealthy donors via cutting the education budget and raiding the state pension fund.  People Who Know Things might be critical of such a move.  Or, of course, it may be unrelated to that specifically, and simply a manifestation of the legislature's disdain for education and all the risks/benefits that an educated citizenry might bring.
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Philip Nel

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On the lingering effects of racist children's culture.
The second in my “Archive of Childhood” series. Trigger warning: images of a racist doll appear below. I've included it because this post is about racism, and I didn't feel I could talk about the racism without displaying the doll in question.
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“Le p'tit renne au nez rouge” — Jacques Larue's translation of Johnny Marks' “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” — reveals the real reason Rudolph's nose was so red. Contrary to the 1964 Rankin-Bass TV special, its glow was not caused by an incandescent bulb. The last four lines (above) tell us: ...
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Have him in circles
103 people
Kid You Not Podcast's profile photo
Richard Flynn's profile photo
lyttle nel's profile photo
Nanu Gavit's profile photo
Ashok Yakkaldevi's profile photo
Isaac Cates's profile photo
Monika Zaviš's profile photo
Abid Saleem's profile photo
SAMINA Bratislava - ich schlafe Lebensenergie's profile photo
Work
Occupation
English Professor
Places
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Currently
Manhattan, Kansas, U.S.A.
Story
Tagline
I write books about children's books & comics.
Introduction
Professor of English. Books include:
  • Crockett Johnson's Barnaby Volume Two: 1944-1945, co-edited with Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics Books, 2014)
  • Crockett Johnson's Barnaby Volume One: 1942-1943, co-edited with Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics Books, 2013)
  • Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss: How an Unlikely Couple Found Love, Dodged the FBI, and Transformed Children's Literature (UP Mississippi, 2012)
  • Keywords for Children's Literature, co-edited with Lissa Paul (NYU Press, 2011)
  • Tales for Little Rebels: A Collection of Radical Children's Literature, co-edited with Julia Mickenberg (NYU Press, 2008)
  • The Annotated Cat: Under the Hats of Seuss and His Cats (Random House, 2007)
  • Dr. Seuss: American Icon (Continuum, 2004)
  • The Avant-Garde and American Postmodernity: Small Incisive Shocks (UP Mississippi, 2002)
  • J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter Novels: A Reader's Guide (Continuum, 2001)
Forthcoming:
  • Crockett Johnson's Barnaby, Volumes 3-5, co-edited with Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics, 2015-2017)
Education
  • Vanderbilt University
    English, 1992 - 1997
  • University Of Rochester
    English and Pyschology, 1988 - 1992
Basic Information
Gender
Male