Laureen Tedesco

Associate Professor
Bate 2129


Laureen Tedesco specializes in Children’s Literature and collects out-of-print children’s books. She has published three essays on gender roles in early Girl Scout handbooks and is now developing articles on an underappreciated evangelical author of the nineteenth century, Isabella MacDonald Alden, who published under the pseudonym “Pansy,” and on Harriett Lothrop, or “Margaret Sidney,” whose husband Daniel Lothrop was Pansy’s publisher. She presented her research on Margaret Sidney’s letters from children’s periodical editors at Minute Man National Historical Park in Concord, MA, in August 2016, at a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service. She has written on another nearly forgotten nineteenth century writer for children, Jane Andrews. She most frequently teaches ENGL 3950, Literature for Children, and now teaches ENGL 3300: Women in Literature as a class on girlhood and women’s education in literature. Her special topics American Renaissance class on “The Literature of Causes” in Spring 2017 drew together her research interests to explore literature promoting the linked causes of abolition, temperance, and women’s suffrage, as well as education reform. She is a member of the Children’s Literature Association and has chairsed its Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award Committee. In 2015, she prepared a Joyner Library exhibit of letters and memorabilia of North Carolina women missionaries.


  • B.A. Nicholls State University
  • M.A. University of Southwestern Louisiana
  • Ph.D. Texas A&M University

Research Interests

  • Children’s Literature
  • 19th & Early 20th Century Girls’ Fiction
  • Gender in Children’s Literature
  • Evangelical Children’s Literature

Courses Taught

  • ENGL 7005: Bibliography and Research Methods
  • ENGL 6515: Advanced Studies in Children’s Literature
  • ENGL 6200/4200: The American Renaissance/American Literature, 1820-1865 (Special Topics: The Literature of Causes)
  • ENGL 4540: Special Topics Seminar
  • ENGL 4170: Victorian Literature
  • ENGL 3950: Literature for Children
  • ENGL 3630: Bible as Literature
  • ENGL 3300: Women in Literature
  • ENGL 3010: British Literary History II
  • ENGL 2201: Writing about the Disciplines
  • ENGL 1100: Foundations of College Writing

Selected Publications and Presentations

  • An appreciation of Bill and Vera Cleaver’s Where the Lilies Bloom in Mark I. West’s, “Childhood in the New South as Reflected in Children’s Literature: A Forum Featuring Lorinda B. Cohoon, Martha Hixon, Dianne Johnson-Feelings, Kenneth Kidd, Jennifer M. Miskec, Anita W. Moss, Claudia Nelson, M. Tyler Sasser, and Laureen Tedesco.” Southern Quarterly vol. 54, nos. 3-4, 2017, pp. 126-63.
  • “Progressive Era Girl Scouts and the Immigrant: Scouting for Girls (1920) as a Handbook for American Girlhood.” Children’s Literature Association Quarterly vol. 31, no. 4, 2006, pp. 346-68.
  • “Pansy (Isabella MacDonald Alden).” Oxford Encyclopedia of Children’s Literature. Ed. Jack MacDonald. Zipes. 2: Vol-Slot. 4 Luca. New York: Oxford UP, 2006. P. 211.
  • “Models of Girlhood.” Rev. essay. Nineteenth Century Studies vol. 20, 2006, pp. 183-89.
  • “The Pedagogy and Problems of Jane Andrews’s The Seven Little Sisters Who Live on the Round Ball that Floats in the Air (1861).” Children’s Literature in Education vol. 37, no. 2, 2006, pp. 133-48.
  • “Sarah Dressen’s Cautiously Optimistic Realism: Decades beyond the Teen Problem Novel.” North Carolina Literary Review no. 15, 2006, pp. 53-63.
  • “The Lost Manhood of the American Girl: A Dilemma in Early Twentieth-Century Girl Scouting.” Children’s Folklore Review vol. 27, 2004-2005, pp. 89-107.