Goodnight Moon Goodnight Moon discussion


827 views
Is it about death?

Comments (showing 1-50 of 75) (75 new)    post a comment »
« previous 1

message 1: by Shula (new)

Shula I too had this book read to me as a child, innocently thinking it was about just about going to sleep. Here is a quote from the end of an article from the New Yorker: "The arrangement in “Goodnight Moon” is completely uneven. Time moves forward, and the little bunny doesn’t stand a chance. Parent and child are, in this way, brought together, on tragic terms. You don’t want to go to sleep. I don’t want to die. But we both have to."

From http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2006...


Ruth I must re-read the text to see, but night/sleep is usually referred to death. Perhpas it simply means sleep and the connotations of death are inevitable when speaking of night and sleep.


message 3: by Meh (new)

Meh Even if it is, who cares? It's a children's book. They don't know. And if they do, they're going to have to learn about death sometime. It is an integral part of our lives. If we can teach them not to fear it so much, great.


Amanda I don't think it's "about" anything. My understanding is that Margaret Wise Brown was notoriously derisive of her own involvement in children's literature and wished that she was a more "serious" writer, which I think implies that she didn't think there was much depth in work for children. I think you can read as much as you want into anything, but the text of Goodnight Moon is very simple, mostly just two word phrases. The illustrations are really what move the book forward-- with each page the room gets a little bit darker and the stars outside get a little bit brighter. It's a slow lulling to sleep in pictures-- and I think that's what people have been using it for all of these years. In the last season of the Wire, there was a scene where a woman's son couldn't sleep and she used Goodnight Moon relaxation techniques-- having him say goodnight to all the things he could see outside his window. I use it to get my son to go to bed. And I remember using it when I was a little girl, saying goodnight to all the things in my room until I couldn't keep my eyes open any longer. So people can interpret it as some dark allegory about death but I don't think that's what it means to the people who have embraced it for generations.


Shawn Geez, it's a kids book on going to sleep. If you want to analyze something, go read Pynchon.


message 6: by Val (new) - rated it 5 stars

Val I just read that article from the New Yorker and it is one of the most ridiculous things I've ever read.


Shawn Which article? Link?


message 8: by Val (new) - rated it 5 stars

Val the article listed in Shula's post above:
http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2006...


Jenna W Loved it !!!!!


Maisey No way it is not anything about death, its a childs book for peets sake!!):) I absoulutely loved and still love this book!


Joanne Oh no, is "Pat The Bunny" about sex ?


Tabitha i like this book


message 13: by Will (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will IV Joanne wrote: "Oh no, is "Pat The Bunny" about sex ?"

hahaha


Maria B. Quagliana i actually had my copy rite with me as i saw this page. i read it through and analyzed the pics and the little old lady whispering hush DOES "disapear" on the last page. she was sitting in the rocking chair in all of the rest of the pics of the room and then the kittens are sleeping on the rocking chair.

as for the little bunny dude: idk. i mean he says goodnite air. and he says goodnite to all the things in his room.

anyway, wen i was young this was like litterally my FAVE book. wenever i saw the cover, sure i cldnt read but tath cover just stayed in my memory. even rite wen i just look for it as i say this forum. i knew exactly what it looked like so wen i just saw the tip of it i knew it was this book.

one time wen i was like 6 or 7 i sed goodnite to evrything in my room. i literally fell asleep cuz i had so much stuff and it got boring. :)


message 15: by Alec (new) - rated it 3 stars

Alec Rogers Maybe the old lady leaves the room when the kid falls asleep? That's what I do when my children fall asleep.
Even Freud acknowledged that sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.


message 16: by Anna (new) - rated it 4 stars

Anna You might as well say that Puff The Magic Dragon was about drugs than to say this is about death. It's a children's book and it's perfectly normal for a rabbit..or child to say goodnight to various objects in the room before he or she falls asleep.


Christina Re read the book, and I'm not seeing what the New Yorker is seeing...though I did really always think that Puff the Magic Dragon was about drugs;)


message 18: by Val (new) - rated it 5 stars

Val All children LOVE to say goodnight to things when they are learning language. It makes perfect sense to them to bid goodnight to inanimate objects. It creates a sense of peace and comfort to them. They also like to say bye bye to things because they have discovered they will see them again and saying bye bye seems like a magical spell that will bring them back again. There's nothing about Good Night Moon other than what meets the eye. That's why it is so beloved after all these years.


Michael Brady Uh oh, then "If You Give a Moose a Muffin" is about stalking, right?

Anyway, have a caution with "Goodnight Moon." If you read it to your child once, you will read it another thousand times or so until they can read for themselves. Never seen a copy that wasn't dog-eared, crinkled,and well-loved.


Maddie OK!For the last time. Goodnight Moon is not about DEATH!!!! It is just a simple baby book!!It makes them go to sleep even though it is really short!!! Kids love it and you probably loved it or at the least liked the book enough to ask your mommy to read it to you!!! So stop bad talking this book and actually READ it again to get the main picture of the book!!


Maddie It is a very kid friendly book!!


message 22: by Will (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will IV Heather wrote: "Uh.... Puff the Magic Dragon WAS about drugs..."

"The authors of the song have repeatedly rejected this urban legend and have strongly and consistently denied that they intended any references to drug use."


Trista My son loves this book. We read it a lot. I guess people can perceive it to be about anything they want, but to me it is and always will be just a children's book with no hidden darker meaning.


message 24: by Mj (new) - rated it 4 stars

Mj Since Amanda mentioned it, I looked up the dialogue from that episode of "The Wire," as uttered by Kima to her son:
Goodnight moon
Goodnight stars
Goodnight po-pos
Goodnight fiends
Goodnight hoppers
Goodnight hustlers
Goodnight scammers
Goodnight to everybody
Goodnight to one and all.
I love it when 2 awesome things collide. If either the book or the show is about death, I guess I didn't notice because they are both about so much more.


message 25: by Samey (new)

Samey Lee It's interesting that you ask this...we bought this book when my baby brother was born September 8, 2001...His eleventh birthday should be tomorrow, but he died of SIDS in January of 2002...This book is his book. We keep it on a shelf in remembrance of him always. I was thinking of him on my walk to work this morning and decided this would be my tattoo for him. I think this book can mean a lot of things, like any piece of poetry it's what you make of it. For me, it is a story of my little brother. So young and innocent who one cold January night, listened to his little rabbit sing " Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep,
thy angels watch me through the night,
And keep me safe till morning's light.

Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep,
If I should die before I wake,
Bless me Lord my soul to take.

Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
Angels watch me through the night,
And wake me with the morning light.
Amen

This book and this prayer are his forever. This book is his goodnight to the world. The book ends "Goodnight stars, Goodnight air, Goodnight noises everywhere" and that to me means goodnight life, goodnight family, goodnight all it's my time to leave...It is a goodbye to everything. . . he is now in the sky, with his stars and his moon and forever will he be... <3


Audrey Klosterman I really doubt it's about death. i mean it's for kids. the author probably wouldn't write something that would upset kids like that. i remember reading this book when i was younger and i never thought it represented death.


Audrey Klosterman Samey wrote: "It's interesting that you ask this...we bought this book when my baby brother was born September 8, 2001...His eleventh birthday should be tomorrow, but he died of SIDS in January of 2002...This bo..."

awwwww! that's so sad! :(


message 28: by Will (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will IV Heather wrote: "Funny that it's hardly deniable. If you use your wonderful critical analysis skills, then it can all be layed out right in front of you. "

It's very deniable, considering the artists deny it consistently when there really is no need to if it really was about drugs. If it was, they would most likely own up to it as it makes the song more appealing.

Your "critical analysis skills" can be applied to 90% of songs to interpret them as songs about drugs. That's the nature of vague lyrics where we also live in a time where there are thousands of colloquialisms for drugs (e.g. weed, dust, pot, buttons, adam, jellies, goofballs, etc. ad nauseum).


message 29: by Livy (new)

Livy I read it to my brother and within 4 pages he was asleep! It is a great book. I don't really think it's about DEATH. Ask the author for goodness sake!


Mochaspresso Why would someone want to twist Goodnight Moon? It's a children's lullaby book. It is not about death. People do the same thing with The Giving Tree by trying to say that it is all about selfishness.


Ethan Minsker I currently am reading this book to my little girl. But I think of it more as a murder mystery. Goodnight mittens? Who's mittens are those? Goodnight socks. Who's socks are those? They are clearly to big for the rabbit or his grandmother. Could they be related to the Bears in chairs? Are the bears mob bosses at a social club?

There are a lot of un answered questions here. The rabbit is going to answer them all in the morning after a good nights sleep. That is if grandmother would stop watching him. She is a little creepy.


Megan Ethan wrote: "I currently am reading this book to my little girl. But I think of it more as a murder mystery. Goodnight mittens? Who's mittens are those? Goodnight socks. Who's socks are those? They are clearly ..."

Nice...come to think of it, something never looked quite right about those bears


message 33: by Livy (new)

Livy Ethan wrote: "I currently am reading this book to my little girl. But I think of it more as a murder mystery. Goodnight mittens? Who's mittens are those? Goodnight socks. Who's socks are those? They are clearly ..."
That is a good question..... I have nooooo idea now. I still say go ask the author!


Melissa Wow, I think someone has way too much time their hands. It really is just a story about putting a child to sleep.


Karen Definitely not. Sometimes people try to over analyze things that are just meant to be simple and straight forward.


Martha Anna wrote: "You might as well say that Puff The Magic Dragon was about drugs than to say this is about death. It's a children's book and it's perfectly normal for a rabbit..or child to say goodnight to various..."

Yeah, and when I found out about Puff & drugs I wanted to smash the messenger in the face. How dare you ruin a beautiful song with that crap. It was a song where I related it to my two boys. Thank God for Leonard Lipton's original intent -- about the end of childhood innocence.


Kaida46 (deb) It's a very sweet children's book about going to sleep. My children have all enjoyed it.


message 38: by Conrad (new) - added it

Conrad Shula wrote: "I too had this book read to me as a child, innocently thinking it was about just about going to sleep. Here is a quote from the end of an article from the New Yorker: "The arrangement in “Goodnigh..."

No to all of the above.


Delmma Melissa wrote: "Wow, I think someone has way too much time their hands. It really is just a story about putting a child to sleep." putting a child to sleep? lol. I think you meant "bed".


Aaron No. C'mon.


message 41: by Mary (new)

Mary Carmen If you have children of your own, you have for sure experienced at least once the "good night" routine. Kids do it to buy themselves time before going to bed. Good night mommy, good night dad, good night teddy bear, good night toys,... And so on!! And this is exactly what this book is about!


message 42: by [deleted user] (new)

It is? Its just a children's book...


Janine Perry It was a "goodnight" routine with all 3 children searching for the mouse.


message 44: by Val (new) - rated it 5 stars

Val Ethan wrote: "I currently am reading this book to my little girl. But I think of it more as a murder mystery. Goodnight mittens? Who's mittens are those? Goodnight socks. Who's socks are those? They are clearly ..."

Megan wrote: "Ethan wrote: "I currently am reading this book to my little girl. But I think of it more as a murder mystery. Goodnight mittens? Who's mittens are those? Goodnight socks. Who's socks are those? The..."

You guys are hilarious!!!!!! what a good way to poke fun at the absurdity of thinking ill thoughts about such an adored children's classic.

I think, by the way, that you should write those books. They sound great. The old lady has obviously spent time in the pen because she's eating mush.


Janine Perry I really think it is telling all good night everywhere.


message 46: by Chris (new)

Chris No, it's not about death, but this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6LIr2...

would make me welcome death if I woke up in that Goodnight Moon world.


Melissa Delmma wrote: "Melissa wrote: "Wow, I think someone has way too much time their hands. It really is just a story about putting a child to sleep." putting a child to sleep? lol. I think you meant "bed"."

lol...hahaha...no I meant sleep. He was in bed already. He was going to sleep.


Aaron Ask a 2 year old what it means. They know. Critics. Humbug.


Nisha Vinod This is a simple case of unnecessary over analysis. The book is a beautiful childrens book on going to sleep. Period.


Carole For goodness sake, it's a bedtime story, not some deep beneath-the-surface theme of death. Who would read a bedtime story about death to a little child? Honestly!


« previous 1
back to top

all discussions on this book | post a new topic


Books mentioned in this topic

Goodnight Moon (other topics)
Old Yeller (other topics)

Authors mentioned in this topic

Edna St. Vincent Millay (other topics)