• Karen J. Renner


Evil children have infiltrated every realm of popular culture, from movies, television, and literature to video games and music videos. As expansive as the genre may be today, stories about evil children have a relatively short history. Although one can find earlier examples, it wasn’t until the 1950s that evil children first appeared with any serious regularity. Surprisingly, the history of evil child narratives has largely been a series of efforts to confirm the essential innocence of children by symbolically pointing to other sources of blame, such as defective biology, dysfunctional families and flawed upbringings, harmful influences, improper schooling, and corrupt societal values and practices. Different categories of evil child have emerged, each focusing primarily on one of these as the primary cause of the evil child.


Popular Culture Music Video Comic Book Child Soldier Gifted Child 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karen J. Renner
    • 1
  1. 1.Northern Arizona UniversityFlagstaffUSA

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