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ERIC Number: ED263991
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Sep
Pages: 8
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Science and Politics of Play.
Hobbs, Sandy; Cornwell, David
In Glasgow, Scotland (September, 1954), children massed in a graveyard to hunt for a vampire with iron teeth said to have slain and eaten "two wee boys." This incident was linked to a campaign for stricter censorship of children's reading, especially so-called "horror comics." While evidence connecting the vampire hunt and horror comics was neither found nor sought, evidence exists for an alternative source of the children's concept of a monster with iron teeth. Like parents in a number of countries, Glasgow parents used the idea of a "Jenny with the Iron Teeth" to threaten children who misbehaved at bed time. Research reveals that the Vampire Hunt of 1954 was one of a series of similar incidents taking place in Western Scotland over half a century before and since that date. If such hunts are indeed relatively common, explanations may not be hard to find. The vampire hunt and another incident involving an attack by schoolchildren on gypsies appeared inexplicable to contemporary observers because certain features of childhood were overlooked. The best hope of understanding such incidents is to relate the children's behavior to their past histories and immediate circumstances. Such an inquiry seems possible without recourse to concepts such as "play" and "delinquency." (RH)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (Scotland)