Page Content

Tea, Table Manners and... A Tiger!: An exploration of how children’s literature transforms the traditional English tea time

00 Tiger Fig 1

Fig. 1 McLoughlin Brothers. Afternoon Tea. New York: McLoughlin Bros, 1883, n.p.

Introduction

The taking of tea is regarded as something quintessentially English; it is a long established practice that has a number of traditions and rituals tied to it. In adult culture this taking of tea is constructed as a staid, 'flat' event governed by a plethora of rules that those sitting at the tea table must observe. In contrast to adult culture, children's literature appears to transform the taking of tea. Through a study of Judith Kerr's iconic picturebook The Tiger Who Came To Tea1 this article explores how the children's author disrupts, re-envisages and energises tea time by investing it with the playfulness of the child. The points raised are discussed with reference to Mikhail Bakhtin's theory of the Carnival, which focuses on the disruptive energies at play during carnival moments and the liberation these events provide from the rules of everyday life. Lastly, this article considers the extent to which children's literature transforms tea time. Through drawing a comparison between the ending of Tiger and the Mad Hatter's tea party in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland2 it argues that whilst children's literature transforms the taking of tea, this transformation is just temporary and actually serves to reinforce the established traditions of tea time.

This fat little boy and his sisters you see
Are out on the lawn at their afternoon tea,
And truly I think, from the looks of the three,
That a very nice thing is this afternoon tea.

3

A cup of tea, a teapot, a tea tray: such objects have been regarded as symbols of Englishness for centuries even though tea has its origins in the Far East. Yet it is not simply the tea itself, or the paraphernalia associated with it, that is invested with a sense of Englishness, but the taking of tea. Taking tea is something quintessentially English, a practice which "dominates our culture" 4 and is frequently invoked to depict national identity. In his collection of cartoons on the English national character, Graham 'Pont' Laidler5 shows a group of Englishmen in the wilderness and rain holding their coats over a fire in order to boil water for a cup of tea; for the English even the elements will not deprive them of their tea. Adventures to faraway lands home to pirates and fairies must also be subservient to tea time. When Peter Pan offers the Darling children the choice of adventures immediately or tea first, Wendy quickly says "tea first" and Michael "presse[s] her hand in gratitude".6

The England that taking tea symbolises is not an England shared by the entire nation. Teatime has its origins in the lifestyle of upper class ladies who in the late 1830s paused mid afternoon to refresh themselves with tea, sandwiches and cakes. This practice "developed into a new social event"7 and gradually became an "established part" 8 of everyday life for the English upper classes. The tea taken by the upper classes constructs England as a country of elegance, wealth and tradition, and stereotypes the English accordingly. The practice of taking tea has since diversified and is no longer just the pursuit of the upper classes. Multifarious 'tea takings' have emerged as English cultural stereotypes; from the labourers sitting in a cafe with mugs of strongly brewed 'builder's tea' to the ladies sipping Darjeeling from china teacups in the country’s finest hotels. These 'tea takings' differ in their degree of formality, the type of tea that is served and the location, but they are all about an action involving a 'taker' and something – the tea - which is taken from another person. 'Taking' implies an exchange and involves another participant, bringing the practice beyond simply 'drinking' tea and turning it into an event. Louise Sylvester regards the taking of tea as a "game"9 with its own set of rules. The analogy is an apt one; to keep a game going participants have to observe rules that are applicable to all - the game descends into anarchy if people play by idiosyncratic rules. Similarly a transgression of the rules when taking tea would be frowned upon and destroy the harmony of the tea table. An Englishman sitting down to a formal afternoon tea would wait for the tea to be "poured by the hostess or a nominated pourer"10 , take food only when it is offered to him and refrain from dunking any food in his tea.

Yet unlike most games, the rules of taking tea are not available as they are mainly part of the English culture's "unwritten codes".11 The unspoken nature of these rules causes problems for those who have not played the game before, as tea time presents them with a mine of social customs to carefully step around. As part of the socializing process and their induction into the culture of their nation, children have to be educated about this English practice. Children's literature is a key means by which such education happens; Carolyn Daniel views the use of food in children's literature as a way to help children “internalize all sorts of rules about food and eating", as well as about "how to perform properly in social situations".12 The nineteenth-century poem Afternoon Tea is educative in a sense, reinforcing how to take tea correctly.

The final stanza reads:

The little fat boy rather greedy appears,
He drinks up his tea with a relish, that's clear,
While his sisters look at him and tremble with fear,
Lest the mug, in the end, with the tea disappear.

13

The authorial voice is slightly critical of the "little fat boy['s]" actions; it is evident that greediness is not acceptable behaviour for a person taking tea. The boy’s refusal to play by the rules means that the event ceases to be an elegant occasion and a "very nice thing" for all involved. The poem may educate readers about taking tea, but it also plays with this symbol of Englishness. The sedate event is invested with energy through the boy and his actions. The image accompanying the poem (Fig. 1) constructs the boy as a larger than life, comical character who sits with his legs wide open, stomach almost bursting out of his patterned trousers and with a mug attached to his face. The taking of tea is also invested with humour through the idea that the boy's mug will "in the end, with the tea disappear". This taking of tea is very much a game and one of the takers does not play by the rules; rather this character plays with the rules, disrupting them and, consequently, the tea. It is this disruption to teatime through the intrusion of larger than life characters who play with established rules that will be explored.

Taking tea as a civilised event

The creative possibilities and fantastical inversions of the teatime emerge from the outset in Judith Kerr’s The Tiger Who Came to Tea14 which is currently celebrating its fiftieth anniversary. Kerr brings some wildness to the taking of tea through placing a tiger at the table (Fig. 2); the tiger is an exotic, wild creature whose home is in the natural world. This wildness, however, is contained and Kerr's tiger has a greater connection to the traditional English gentleman than to a wild predator. The cover is structured so that it gives an image of civility; the tiger sits decorously on a chair and models perfect manners. The title also aligns the tiger with the human rather than the animal. It is the Tiger Who Came to Tea, not the Tiger That Came to Tea; an authorial decision that "affords the Tiger a certain personhood".15 As a result of the tiger's wildness being contained the tea is a civilised event; his presence may bring a certain colour and playfulness to the event but it has not transformed it.


Tt

Fig. 2 Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968, n.p. © 1968 Kerr-Kneale Productions Ltd.

The tea Sophie and her mummy take prior to the tiger's arrival (Fig. 3) is a civilised event and aligns with how the practice is represented in English culture. Taking tea is often constructed as flat and staid, in the sense of being an ordered occasion lacking energy. Although the rituals of teatime are actions, such as the 'mother' pouring out tea for those seated at the table, they do not energise the event. Such rituals are devoid of liveliness because they have stronger connections to the nation's past and its dead through their origins as formal practices carried out by the upper classes centuries ago.16 Being ingrained in English culture, these rituals are also ones that those taking tea carry out in the established way, going through the motions of the teatime routine rather than reinventing or disrupting elements of it. Through being a civilised event the tea becomes a civilising one. The taking of tea is an event "under maternal authority"17, which is reflected in how the person charged with pouring the drink is widely referred to as 'mother'. In this scene Sophie's mother takes on the roles of head of the table and teacher, helping Sophie to learn the unspoken rules of taking tea by modelling these herself. The teatime inducts Sophie and child readers into one of their nation's social practices and serves to reinforce the established rules of this 'game'.

T4

Fig. 3 Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968, n.p. © 1968 Kerr-Kneale Productions Ltd.  

The potential for this teatime to be disrupted is hinted at through the playful switch of who is at the head of the table. The adult, Sophie's mother, has power in terms of holding the teapot and controlling the pouring of tea. The reader's and Sophie's mother's gaze, however, is directed at Sophie who is positioned in the centre of the image. A further hint of the potential for disruption comes from Sophie's clothes and chair; the bright colour of her chair and her patchwork patterned tights inject energy into the taking of tea, standing in contrast to her mother's darker, plainer clothing. They are not dissimilar to the costumes of carnival with their connotations of playfulness, liveliness and disruption. As in extra-carnival life, however, these creative energies are repressed. Outside of the carnival people must adhere to "the existing hierarchy" and "the existing rules" of society18; here Sophie must follow the rules of teatime being taught and is subject to "maternal authority".19

T5

Fig. 4 Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968, n.p. © 1968 Kerr-Kneale Productions Ltd.  

The confliction of civilising and wild energies at the tea table

The addition of the tiger initially causes little disruption and the tea remains a civilised event (Fig. 4). Sophie's mummy, the figure with the strongest connections to the human, civilised world, remains in control of the tea and grasps the teapot firmly. The teapot remains a flat, lifeless object, simply resting on top of the table as is its normal position at teatime. There has, however, been a playful shift in who is at the head of the table. The reader's gaze is now focused on the tiger who, as a larger than life figure, towers over the table compared to Sophie and her mummy. This shift in the gaze introduces an element of disruption and playfulness to the tea and starts to conflict with the civilising energies that have dominated up to this point in the text.

T6

Fig. 5 Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968, n.p. © 1968 Kerr-Kneale Productions Ltd.  

Gradually the disruption that has previously been hinted at starts comes to take a greater hold over the teatime. After being offered a sandwich the tiger "didn't just take one", instead he "took all the sandwiches on the plate and swallowed them in one big mouthful"20 (recto Fig. 5). The tiger's actions are a clear transgression of expected behaviour at the tea table. He dispenses with some the rules on taking tea and begins to act as he so desires. It is evident that the tiger's wildness, which he had previously tried to contain by behaving in a civilised way, is starting to surface; "the anthropomorphic mode dissolves and the 'real' animal emerges".21

Eventually the tiger's wildness completely overcomes the civilising energies to fully dominate and disrupt the tea (verso Fig. 6). In the previous images the tiger is hunched over slightly when sitting and is confined to one side of the table (Fig. 4). In this image the tiger is depicted at his full size as he leans back to drink tea, and Sophie and her mummy have been pushed into a corner. The tiger has gone from taking tea with Sophie and her mummy to taking over their tea. The shift in the placement of the teapot is also particularly significant. The teapot has been snatched away from Sophie's mummy by the tiger who raises it into the air and tips it towards his mouth. The action is a particularly playful one because it uses the teapot in a way that is unconventional and clearly breaks rules of etiquette for taking tea. It is through the tiger's wildness that "the normally ordered occasion of tea becomes one of riotous and joyful celebration"22; the staid, stereotypically English teatime becomes a lively, un-English affair. A true Bakhtinian carnival moment is constructed where the established rules and hierarchies are overturned by previously suppressed energies. The tiger, like the carnival, provides "liberation from norms of etiquette and decency imposed at other times".23 He offers Sophie, her mummy and readers the opportunity to dispense with the behaviour and rituals that they are expected to observe when taking tea. The carnivalesque in children's literature is about constructing a world that is "playful and unfamiliar" and that "expresses opposition to authoritarianism and seriousness".24 Through the tiger's disruption of the tea readers are given the opportunity to leave the everyday world and to enter a world that is a more colourful, lively and exciting one.

T1

Fig. 6 Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968, n.p. © 1968 Kerr-Kneale Productions Ltd.  

The Mad Hatter's tea party (Fig. 7) in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland25 is similarly disrupted by the wild. The wild, however, does not intrude upon a civilised tea but dominates from the outset. Larger than life characters are in attendance and their costumes connect to the carnival. The Mad Hatter wears a hat that is comically large, as well as an oversized polka-dot bow-tie, and the March Hare has ears of corn wound round his own ears. John Tenniel's illustrations of the tea party may be colourless, but the characters invest the image with a colour; for readers the exuberant Mad Hatter is certainly decked out in brightly coloured, garish attire. The characters' actions are also more aligned with the wild rather than the civilised. Participants at the Mad Hatter's tea party must "all move one place on"26 at random intervals, may have "a little hot tea poured upon [their] nose[s]"27 and may even be stuffed into the teapot. These actions bring a sense of the party to the event that is taking place and construct the tea as a game whose rules are very much being played with. As in Tiger, the carnivalesque dominates this taking of tea, with playfulness and unfamiliarity invested in the event through the way the physical set up mixes indoors and outdoors. Tea parties are typically held indoors, but the Mad Hatter's has been "set out under a tree in front of the house".28 The party has not been fully transformed into one suited for the outdoors and retains some of the features of a tea held indoors; Alice sits in "a large arm-chair"29 whose appearance is quite out of place amongst the trees (Fig. 7). The disruption of the tea by the wild provides Alice, like Sophie, with a break from the rule governed everyday world; however these two characters take very different approaches to the wild they encounter.

00 Tiger Fig 7

Fig. 7 Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Folio Society Edn). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1865/1961, 59.

The child's negotiation of the wild

Following his disruption of the tea the Tiger departs the table and roams the house in search of what he can get. Sophie's mummy's reaction to this disruption is one of shock and slight fear, her hand raised to her mouth in alarm. She is unable to cope with the wild and retreats from the kitchen, reappearing only when the tiger leaves the house. Sophie, however, embraces the wild and, by extension, the carnivalesque. She hugs the tiger tightly (verso Fig. 8) and accompanies him whilst he hunts for food. It is clear that she welcomes the tiger's intrusion into her house and the playfulness he has brought to her tea. Sophie may be able to embrace the wild in a way that her mother cannot by virtue of being a child. The child has been constructed as closer to the wild and the natural world as, unlike adults, they have yet to become civilised.30 Through possessing a playfulness and creativity that adults are taken to have lost, children are also able to conceive of the world as being different to how it is.31 In their play they are used to inhabiting worlds that are playful and creative; worlds where a tiger could certainly come to tea.

T2

Fig. 8 Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968, n.p. © 1968 Kerr-Kneale Productions Ltd.  

Alice negotiates the wild in a way that aligns her more with the adult than the child, as she attempts to civilise the Mad Hatter and March Hare. Alice models correct behaviour for other participants at the table and reprimands characters when they transgress the rules; when offered a drink by the March Hare that is not available she scolds him, saying, "It wasn't very civil of you to offer it."32 Despite the civilising energies she brings to the table, Alice is unable to contain the wild. When it becomes clear that the participants will not obey the rules of taking tea she "rejects them all entirely and walks off",33 denouncing the event as "the stupidest tea party I ever was at in all my life!"34 Alice's attitude towards the disruption of the tea reflects her particular background. The England she is growing up in is a traditional, upper class England where tea is a refined occasion and rules about social etiquette are expected to be dutifully obeyed rather than challenged.35 A transgression of said rules would be widely perceived as a deplorable event rather than a potentially thrilling one. In contrast Tiger was written in the 1960s, a period that in England was about embracing the modern and celebrating innovation in fashion, music and many other areas of culture.36 Taking tea was still a popular English practice, but not to the extent that it had been at the start of the twentieth century: "Life had speeded up and it was no longer easy to pause for tea."37 The English would not have been wholly enthusiastic about a 'tiger' at the tea table, but like Sophie many would not have been averse to dispensing with established rules for some excitement and light-hearted fun.

Alice's failed attempts to control the tea result in it being dominated by the wild; it is a tea time which overturns the rules of the civilised world and provides readers with a break from them. Yet it is through overturning these rules that children's literature also reinforces them, teaching children about the 'correct' way to take tea. This interpretation aligns with a Bakhtinian reading of the texts. The carnival provides freedom from the rules and hierarchies of society, but it also serves to reinforce them. It is a contained disruption, sanctioned by the authorities and happening under their terms. Carnival allows for a release of social tensions and subversive energies so that people can return to conforming: "Far from undermining the existing order it actually contributes to its survival."38 Daniel argues that the Mad Hatter's party is a tea that "interrogates, but ultimately affirms the social order".39 The Mad Hatter's and March Hare's actions transgress the rules, but through Alice the 'correct' way to behave is clearly communicated and comes to seem desirable. The bizarre and nonsensical behaviour of these wild characters appears exciting at first, but the reader, like Alice, becomes frustrated by the inability to make any sense of what is happening. Reinstating the established rules of teatime to bring some order to this chaos is an attractive prospect. The tiger's disruption of Sophie's tea does not leave the reading craving these rules to the same extent; a tiger interrupting tea is exciting rather than infuriating! This disruption, however, still highlights and reinforces correct behaviour at the tea table. The tiger's decision not to "just take one sandwich" and to swallow all the sandwiches "in one big mouthful"40 communicates to child readers that a person taking tea should take 'just one' sandwich and should not swallow their food in the way the tiger does. The tiger may be an exciting, exotic figure but, the text says, he is not a role model for how to take tea. Therefore, whilst children's literature overturns the rules that usually govern tea time, it is through doing so that it reinforces these rules and educates children about how they should take tea - even if it is with a Tiger!

End Notes

Go to footnote reference 1.

Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968

Go to footnote reference 2.

Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Folio Society Edn.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1865/1961.

Go to footnote reference 3.

McLoughlin Brothers, Afternoon Tea. New York: McLoughlin Brothers, 1883, 1. 

Go to footnote reference 4.

Jane Pettigrew, A social history of tea. London: National Trust, 2001, 181.

Go to footnote reference 5.

Graham 'Pont' Laidler, The British: The National Character Observed. London: Duckwork Overlook, 2011, n.p.

Go to footnote reference 6.

James Matthew Barrie, Peter Pan (Parragon Classic Edn.). Bristol: Parragon Book Service Ltd, 1911/1993, 41.

Go to footnote reference 7.

Jane Pettigrew, A social history of tea. London: National Trust, 2001, 102.

Go to footnote reference 8.

ibid.

Go to footnote reference 9.

Louise Sylvester, 'A Knock at the Door: Reading Judith Kerr's picturebooks in the context of her holocaust fiction', The Lion and the Unicorn, 26, 1 (2002), 20.

Go to footnote reference 10.

Debrett’s, 'Tea', Debrett's A – Z Guide to British Etiquette, 2018. https://www.debretts.com/debretts-a-to-z/t/

Go to footnote reference 11.

Peter Hunt, Criticism, theory, and children's literature. Oxford: Blackwell, 1991, 14

Go to footnote reference 12.

Carolyn Daniel, Voracious children: who eats whom in children’s literature. London: Routledge, 2006, 12

Go to footnote reference 13.

McLoughlin Brothers, Afternoon Tea. New York: McLoughlin Brothers, 1883, 1.

Go to footnote reference 14.

Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968, n.p.

Go to footnote reference 15.

Zoe Jaques, Children's literature and the posthuman: animal, environment, cyborg. London: Routledge, 2013, 97.

Go to footnote reference 16.

Jane Pettigrew, A social history of tea. London: National Trust, 2001, 22

Go to footnote reference 17.

Tim Beasley-Murray, 'A wolf in Tiger's clothing: Danger, desire and pleasure in Judith Kerr's The Tiger Who Came To Tea', Children's Literature Association Quarterly, 38, 2 (2013), 206.

Go to footnote reference 18.

Mikhail Bakhtin, Rabelais and his world (H. Iswolsky, Trans.). Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1965/1984, 9.

Go to footnote reference 19.

Tim Beasley-Murray, 'A wolf in Tiger's clothing: Danger, desire and pleasure in Judith Kerr's The Tiger Who Came To Tea', Children's Literature Association Quarterly, 38, 2 (2013), 206.

Go to footnote reference 20.

Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968, n.p

Go to footnote reference 21.

Zoe Jaques, Children's literature and the posthuman: animal, environment, cyborg. London: Routledge, 2013, 99

Go to footnote reference 22.

Tim Beasley-Murray, 'A wolf in Tiger's clothing: Danger, desire and pleasure in Judith Kerr's The Tiger Who Came To Tea', Children's Literature Association Quarterly, 38, 2 (2013), 205.

Go to footnote reference 23.

Mikhail Bakhtin, Rabelais and his world (H. Iswolsky, Trans.). Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1965/1984, 10.

Go to footnote reference 24.

John Stephens, Language and ideology in children's fiction. Harlow: Longman, 1992, 122

Go to footnote reference 25.

Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Folio Society Edn.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1865/1961.

Go to footnote reference 26.

ibid, 65.

Go to footnote reference 27.

ibid, 61.

Go to footnote reference 28.

ibid, 58.

Go to footnote reference 29.

ibid.

Go to footnote reference 30.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Emile, or On Education (A. Bloom, Trans.). Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1762/1991.

Go to footnote reference 31.

Patricia Holland, Picturing Childhood. The myth of the child in popular imagery. London: I.B. Tauris & Co Ltd, 2006, 95-116.

Go to footnote reference 32.

Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Folio Society Edn.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1865/1961, 58.

Go to footnote reference 33.

Wendy Katz, 'Some uses of food in children's literature', Children's Literature in Education, 20, 3 (1980), 192.

Go to footnote reference 34.

Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Folio Society Edn.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1865/1961, 66.

Go to footnote reference 35.

Jane Pettigrew, A social history of tea. London: National Trust, 2001, 102-104.

Go to footnote reference 36.

Simon Featherstone, Englishness: twentieth century popular culture and the forming of English identity. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2009, 159-178.

Go to footnote reference 37.

Helen Simpson, The Ritz London Book of Afternoon Tea. London: Ebury Publishing, 2006, 17.

Go to footnote reference 38.

Jonathan Dollimore, Sexual Dissidence: Augustine to Wilde, Freud to Foucault. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991, 82.

Go to footnote reference 39.

Carolyn Daniel, Voracious children: who eats whom in children's literature. London: Routledge, 2006, 52.

Go to footnote reference 40.

Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children’s Books, 1968, n.p.

Bibliography

Mikhail Bakhtin, Rabelais and his world (H. Iswolsky, Trans.). Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1965/1984. 

James Matthew Barrie, Peter Pan (Parragon Classic Edn.). Bristol: Parragon Book Service Ltd, 1911/1993.

Tim Beasley-Murray, 'A wolf in Tiger's clothing: Danger, desire and pleasure in Judith Kerr’s The Tiger Who Came To Tea', Children’s Literature Association Quarterly, 38, 2 (2013), 199-214.

Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Folio Society Edn.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1865/1961. 

Carolyn Daniel, Voracious children: who eats whom in children's literature. London: Routledge, 2006.

Debrett’s, 'Tea', Debrett's A – Z Guide to British Etiquette, 2018. https://www.debretts.com/debretts-a-to-z/t/ [Accessed 18th January 2018].

Jonathan Dollimore, Sexual Dissidence: Augustine to Wilde, Freud to Foucault. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. 

Simon Featherstone, Englishness: twentieth century popular culture and the forming of English identity. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2009.

Judith Graham, 'The Same or Different: Children's books show us the way' in Margaret Meek (ed), Children's Literature and National Identity. Stoke on Trent: Trentham Books, 2001, 103-110.

Patricia Holland, Picturing Childhood. The myth of the child in popular imagery. London: I.B. Tauris & Co Ltd, 2006. 

Peter Hunt, Criticism, theory, and children's literature. Oxford: Blackwell, 1991.

Zoe Jaques, Children's literature and the posthuman: animal, environment, cyborg. London: Routledge, 2013. 

Wendy Katz, 'Some uses of food in children’s literature', Children's Literature in Education, 20, 3 (1980), 192-199.

Kara Keeling & Scott Pollard, 'Introduction: Food in Children's Literature' in Kara Keeling and Scott Pollard (eds), Critical Approaches to Food in Children's Literature. Abingdon: Routledge, 2009, 3-21.

Judith Kerr, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. London: HarperCollins Children's Books, 1968.

Graham ‘Pont’ Laidler, The British: The National Character Observed. London: Duckwork Overlook, 2011.

McLoughlin Brothers, Afternoon Tea. New York: McLoughlin Brothers, 1883. http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00026022/00001?search=afternoon+=tea [Accessed 20th January 2018].

Jane Pettigrew, A social history of tea. London: National Trust, 2001. 

Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Emile, or On Education (A. Bloom, Trans.). Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1762/1991. 

Helen Simpson, The Ritz London Book of Afternoon Tea. London: Ebury Publishing, 2006. 

John Stephens, Language and ideology in children's fiction. Harlow: Longman, 1992. 

Louise Sylvester, 'A Knock at the Door: Reading Judith Kerr's picturebooks in the context of her holocaust fiction', The Lion and the Unicorn, 26, 1 (2002), 16-30.

​Amy Webster

Amy Webster is a third year PhD student in the Children’s Literature Research Centre at the University of Cambridge. Her doctoral work focuses on the historical recovery and statistical analysis of series of children’s classics, looking particularly at how classic texts are abridged and packaged for inclusion in series. This essay formed part of her Master's thesis that explored how Englishness is represented in children's literature through a study of taking tea, London landmarks and wet weather.