CFP – Special Issue of Childhood: Children, Childhoods, and Everyday Militarisms

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Children, Childhoods, and Everyday Militarisms
Future Special Issue of Childhood: A Journal of Global Child Research

Guest Editors
J. Marshall Beier, Department of Political Science, McMaster University, Canada
Jana Tabak, Institute of International Relations, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Childhoods, Militarisms: complex and highly varied spheres of social life and lived experience, too often rendered discretely and monolithically in popular imaginaries. To explore the connections between them is to destabilize the limits that structure and organize the modern ideas of the child and of organized political violence. Put another way, thinking about the dynamic intersections of militarisms and childhoods is wont to be framed as a “problem” inasmuch as it brings to the forefront the supposed untenable linkage between children’s vulnerability and innocence and the extreme violences of contemporary conflicts.

This special issue of Childhood will explore these powerful socio-political logics by inquiring into experiences of childhood in connection with issues of everyday militarisms, which are wide-ranging and shape civilian spaces and social relations in ways that may be subtle and inconspicuous. It draws from the pervasive and growing presence of militarized practices in domains such as culture, health, and space, in order to get to the broader and deeper circulations of militarisms, which may be experienced, felt, or engaged in the everyday lives of children seemingly remote from zones of conflict. Without denying the continuing relevance of debates on militarization in conflict zones, this special issue aims at exploring the relationships between childhoods and militarisms in contexts beyond those associated with child soldiers, which means taking up a particular angle of the pervasive presence of militarism in minute and mundane aspects of everyday milieus: how, for example, militarism constrains and enables spaces, routines, and experiences of childhood and youth through school curricula, museum programming, cinema, the marketing of toys, and more.

With these limitations and their conceptual lacunae very much in mind, we propose to take a critical view of how militarized experiences of childhood risk upsetting the parameters of what is made normal and acceptable in the everyday. Thinking about the relationship between children, childhoods, and militarisms opens spaces in which to explore not only nuances of children’s participation in armed conflicts, but also how different modalities of war shape the daily lives of children and youth, including in contexts far from conflict zones.

In this special issue, we seek contributions that inquire into forms and processes of how particular childhoods are militarized. We also wish to stimulate reflection and inspire further research along lines of our contention that the debates on militarization need to be widened to include thinking also about how militarisms are affected by childhoods. Positioning children’s subjectivity more centrally, rather than engaging them only as objects of militarization, we refer to how children resist and/or participate in processes and practices of militarization. This opens spaces within which to examine children’s ability to negotiate descriptions of and prescriptions for how to be a child from different sources and within different contexts: from the family sphere and the school environment to international armed conflicts.

We welcome empirical and theoretically-informed contributions that adopt local and global perspectives and investigate the conceptual and practical implications of militarized everyday experiences of children and youth for the construction, maintenance, and reproduction of social order(s). We seek analyses of militarisms that affect and are affected by children in everyday routines and lived experiences beyond the conflict zone in ways that extend, complicate, and produce more nuanced understandings of children, childhoods, and militarisms. Accordingly, we are interested in how children understood as objects of militarization – and protection – are excluded from political frameworks but nevertheless occupy critical subject positions and, at the same time, are relied upon as already-politicized semiotic and discursive resources in scholarly debates concerning militarism as much as in political elites’ rhetorical flourishes regarding threats to national and international security.

Possible themes for papers include, but are not limited to:

  • programmatic recruitments of/outreach to children by militaries;
  • children’s participation in armed conflicts;
  • doxa of militarism in children’s everyday lives;
  • militarisms and school curricula;
  • militarisms and toys/play;
  • youth, drugs, and militarisms;
  • the relationship of militarism to gendered childhoods;
  • race, childhoods, and militarisms;
  • vurban violence and youth gangs;

  • children and militarism-interpolated pop culture and/or consumer culture;
  • militarized appeals to children/childhoods as affective referents;
  • childhoods and militarism in an era of ascendant authoritarianism;
  • militarisms and juvenile justice;
  • intergenerational military careers;
  • children and militarization of language.


  • Submission of abstracts (300 words, in English), sent electronically to the Managing Editor, Karin Ekberg ( by 1 February 2019. Please include author’s name(s), affiliation(s), and contact information.
  • Invitations sent to possible paper contributors, 15 February 2019
  • Submission of full papers by 1 July 2019
  • Review process and revision, 1 July 2019 – 1 March 2020
  • Anticipated publication date for the Special Issue, August 2020

For enquiries, contact
Marshall Beier:
Jana Tabak:

Childhood is a major international peer reviewed journal and a forum for research relating to children in global society that spans divisions between geographical regions, disciplines, and social and cultural contexts. Childhood publishes theoretical and empirical articles, reviews and scholarly comments on children’s social relations and culture, with an emphasis on their rights and generational position in society. Articles are no longer than 7000 words, including all notes and references.

Further information about Childhood:

CFP – Bodies, Borders, and Boundaries: Embodiments of Multicultural and Transnational Children

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Call for Papers
Children’s Literature Association Sponsored Session, MLA 2020
Bodies, Borders, and Boundaries: Embodiments of Multicultural and Transnational Children
January 9-12 at Seattle, Washington

Scholars such as Emer O’Sullivan and Adrian Bailey have written about the need to look past the universal model of childhood, and to consider children as being part of a complex, intercultural and globalized world. O’Sullivan denies the existence of the “universal republic of childhood” by noting that “the concept of the universal child is a Romantic abstraction which ignores the real conditions of children’s communications across borders” (18). Indeed, the cultural constructions of children are diverse, and perceptions of childhood are further complicated in the globalized world. Michael Hames-García’s term, “multiplicity,” is one way of explaining the embodiment of the transnational and/or multicultural child. “Multiplicity,” according to Hames- García, is “the mutual constitution and overlapping of simultaneously experienced and politically significant categories such as ability, citizenship, class, ethnicity, gender, race, religion, and sexuality”; “[r]ather than existing as essentially separate axes that sometimes intersect, social identities blend, constantly and differently, expanding one another and mutually constituting one another’s meanings” (13). The body of the transnational, multicultural child is also one that occupies several matrices at once. This raises a significant question about one’s seemingly inherent composition: what makes one Nigerian, or Mexican, or Indian? Is it one’s citizenship status? Language? Race? Ancestry? Or is it a combination of these? Further, how are intangible aspects of one’s identity embodied and enacted? And how do they affect a body’s navigation through geographical and/or cultural borders? This panel examines how intersecting identities affect children who navigate our hyper-globalized world.

It is especially important to inquire into the relationship between the body of the child and the boundaries they straddle. With events such as the child refugee crisis in Syria, the recruitment of child soldiers in Uganda, and the state-approved incarceration of children on our very borders, there is an urgent need to examine the representation of the embodiment of transnational, multicultural children in literature and media. Borrowing from the work of Kevin Dunn who draws attention to the fact that “[m]igration research has always been about bodies,” and to the idea of “embodied transnationalism,” we seek papers that examine how the body of the child/adolescent negotiates borders and boundaries (1). Keeping in mind that cultural identities are not always social constructions, we invite scholarship that considers the heterogeneity and plurality of the body with particular regard to children’s and young adult literature. Relevant topics include but are not restricted to the following:

  • Visible and invisible borders and boundaries
  • Translingual and transnational borders and boundaries
  • Migration and migrant literature
  • Multicultural and multiracial bodies
  • Geographical and political spaces
  • Socio cultural, historical, and (inter)religious spaces
  • Coloniality, postcoloniality, and tribal sovereignty
  • Materiality of the maternal body
  • Sexual and queer citizenship, and transcending gender binaries
  • Anthropomorphic and monstrous bodies
  • Resistance, empowerment, subjugation, and authority of adult, adolescent, and child bodies
  • Disability and the boundaries of differently-abled bodies
  • Cyborg bodies, posthumanism, and ecocriticism
  • Intersectional scholarship and interdisciplinary studies
  • Social media activism and digital boundaries
  • Political commentary and activism
  • Child soldiers, the war on terror, and perspectives on violence
  • Trauma studies and narratives of witnessing
  • Water (as a fluid/liminal space)
  • Magical, fantastic, carnivalesque, and other liminal spaces
  • Metatextual, postmodern and peritextual spaces
  • Breaking boundaries through poetry
  • Visible and invisible borders and boundaries in picture books, comics, graphic narratives, and films

Please email your paper proposals to Tharini Viswanath and Nithya Sivashankar at by March 1, 2019 (11.59 p.m. EST). Your Word/PDF documents should include the following:

a) Author(s’) name(s) and affiliation(s)
b) E-mail address for correspondence
c) Proposal (450-500 words)
d) Author(s’) bio(s) (of up to 100 words)

Call for Submissions for 2018 Frances E. Russell Grant

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Call for Submissions

The Canadian National Section of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY Canada) is now accepting proposals for the 2018 Frances E. Russell Grant. The $1,000 grant is intended to support IBBY Canada’s mission to initiate and encourage research in young people’s literature in all its forms and is given in support of research for a publishable work (a book or a paper) on Canadian children’s literature.

The proposal deadline for the Frances E. Russell Grant is January 15, 2019. For more information, see

CFP – Evil Children: Children and Evil

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Evil Children: Children and Evil
Monday, 15 July 2019 – Tuesday, 16 July 2019
Verona, Italy

The idea of the child as innocent, as pure, the “little angel” in need of protection from the harsh realities of life and the corrupting influences of the world around us has come to dominate our thinking, language, values, social policies and educational philosophies in the past few decades. Children are seen as “little people,” “blank slates,” works in progress who are loved, nurtured and guided as they grow to become mature, rational and responsible adults.

Yet we are also aware of the mischievous “little monsters,” the “little devils” who run exasperated parents ragged. The toddlers who chase pigeons; kick cats; pull the wings off flies and the legs off spiders. Children of whom we become afraid; who abuse other children; who assault each other, strangers, parents, the elderly. Children who “roam” and “own” the streets, individually or “in packs”; who are put “into care”; who commit crimes; who smoke, drink, and take drugs. Feral children. Children who rape. Children who torture. Children who kill. Children who are “possessed”: demonic children, evil children who do evil things.

This research stream will juggle with three competing approaches to children and evil. The first concerns itself with how (certain) children have been presented as evil and considers the nature of evil children as a social and cultural construct. The second concerns what is meant by “innocence” – in all contexts – and then particularly the “innocence of a child.” The third approach considers the question of whether and, if so, in what ways children can be evil. Are children wicked? Are children malicious? What does it mean to be personally, socially, legally and morally responsible? And, if responsibility exists, at what point does one assume responsibility for one’s acts? What is it about the special status of “childhood” that somehow makes it different?

The inaugural launch of this inclusive interdisciplinary conference will begin to examine, explore and undermine issues surrounding the general idea of the child as innocent and explore all aspects of evil children and the relationship between children and evil with a view to forming a publication to engender further collaboration and discussion. It will probe the dichotomies and ambiguities of our understanding and constructs of children, childhood, the passage through childhood to adulthood and the relationship with personal and social values, morals and responsibilities. It will map the ways in which children could or should be held accountable for the things they do and the contexts in which they are subject to influencing factors and conditions. And it will assess the use of “evil” in relation to children and childhood in historical and contemporary cultures.

Topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Innocence and evil; innocent evil
  • Evil and age; does age matter?
  • Children: mad, bad or something else?
  • Children, evil and empathy
  • The child as perpetrator
  • Normal children; aberrant children
  • The vilification of children
  • Evil, children and/in Fairy Tales: Folk Lore and evil children
  • Evil, children and the supernatural
  • Evil and the end of childhood
  • Legal perspectives
  • Forensic and Clinical/Biological perspectives
  • Child murderers; children who kill
  • Evil, children and the military. Children and war. Child soldiers
  • Infanticide
  • Evil in the playground
  • Evil, children and/in literature (e.g., Jack Merridew, Lord of the Flies; Frank Cauldhame, The Wasp Factory)
  • Evil, children and/in films (e.g., “Chuckie,” “Ben,” Damien Torne, Henry Evans, Isaac Chroner, Regan MacNeill)
  • Evil, children and tv (e.g., Joffrey Baratheon, Kevin Katchadourian, Stewie Griffin)
  • Children in Horror Literature (“Carrie”)
  • “Protecting” children from evil (film ratings, etc.)
  • “Original Sin” and evil children
  • Children in Victorian drama or literature: victims and perpetrators
  • Children, disability and evil
  • Bastard children (e.g., Shakespeare)
  • The psychology and psychopathology of evil children
  • Economics of children and evil
  • Cross-cultural perspectives of children and evil
  • Children, evil and social policies
  • Children, education and evil
  • Inherited evils: the sins of the parents; children, evil and family
  • Children who become evil adults

We invite people from all disciplines, professions and vocations to come together in dialogue, to provide a space and a level of legitimacy for a subject, or subjects that is traditionally seen as unimaginable, a socially taboo and even associated with pathology, by providing a forum for ideas and arguments that might otherwise not receive adequate attention and discussion. The ultimate goal is in a sense to expose the current topic to the light of day for examination of the intellectual, the emotional and the personal.

Currently, the significant areas of interest include literature, sociology, communications, art, psychology, politics, philosophy, history, anthropology, and other social sciences and humanities. Yet the scope of the conference is not limited to these fields or studies as it does not strike to narrowly define, or define at all, what areas constitute the significant not to eliminate the spirit of interdisciplinary efforts. The meeting is also open to other fields such as biology, biochemistry, political sciences, economics, etc. This kind of interdisciplinary engagement is always enjoyable and fruitful and makes for good networking and collaborative possibilities. Activists, anthropologists, archaeologies, archivists, artists and other creative professionals, civil servants, members of the clergy, clinicians, correctional authorities, historians, journalists, jurists and other legal professionals, military personnel, researchers, writers and others with an interest in the project are encouraged to submit proposals.

What to Send
The aim of this interdisciplinary conference and collaborative networking event is to bring people together and encourage creative conversations in the context of a variety of formats: papers, seminars, workshops, storytelling, performances, poster presentations, panels, q&a’s, roundtables etc.

300 word proposals, presentations, abstracts and other forms of contribution and participation should be submitted by Friday, 22 February 2019. Other forms of participation should be discussed in advance with the Organising Chair.

All submissions will be minimally double reviewed, under anonymous (blind) conditions, by a global panel drawn from members of the Project Development Team and the Advisory Board. In practice our procedures usually entail that by the time a proposal is accepted, it will have been triple and quadruple reviewed.

You will be notified of the panel’s decision by Friday, 8 March 2019.

If your submission is accepted for the conference, a full draft of your contribution should be submitted by Friday, 31 May 2019.

Abstracts and proposals may be in Word, PDF, RTF or Notepad formats with the following information and in this order:
a) author(s), b) affiliation as you would like it to appear in the programme, c) email address, d) title of proposal, e) body of proposal, f) up to 10 keywords.

E-mails should be entitled: Evil Children Submission.

Early Bird Submission and Discount
Submissions received on or before Friday 18th January 2019 will be eligible for a 10% registration fee discount.

Where to Send
Abstracts should be submitted simultaneously to the Organising Chair and the Project Administrator:
Dr Robert Fisher:
Project Administrator:

Call for Book Reviews Editor for Journal of the History of Childhood and Youth

JHCY journal cover

The Journal of the History of Childhood and Youth is calling for scholars to serve as book review editor(s). JHCY is the only international journal devoted to the historical study of childhood and youth. Covering all time periods and geographical areas, JHCY is now established as the major publication that examines age as a category of analysis as it intersects with gender, race and sexuality, and ideas and practices of childhood, and the lives of children in different historical contexts. Celebrating its 11th volume published by Johns Hopkins University Press, the journal has a tradition of publishing rigorously researched, peer-reviewed articles on children, childhood and youth around the world.

The journal publishes three volumes per year. Each issue contains 5 or 6 articles and around 8-10 book reviews. The new book review editor(s) will liaise with book publishers and the JHCY editor. The position begins June 2019 (negotiable). Questions about the position and formal expressions of interest should be submitted to Linda Mahood ( Deadline May 2019.

Call for Nominations for 2018 Grace Abbott Book Prize

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The Society for the History of Children and Youth (SHCY) is pleased to call for nominations for the best book in English on the history of children, childhood, or youth (broadly construed) published in the year 2018.

The award consists of a plaque and a check for $500. The winner will be announced during the Spring of 2019, and acknowledged at the SHCY’s biennial international conference in Sydney, Australia in late June.

Nominations are invited from publishers, editors, and scholars, and self-nominations by authors. Current members of the SHCY award committee, the executive committee, and officers of the society are ineligible.

Nominations must be postmarked by January 14, 2019. Send a physical copy of the book via post to each of three award committee members:

Dr. Laurence Brockliss (Chair)
85 Whitecross
Wootton, Abingdon
Oxon OX13 6BS
United Kingdom

Dr. Richard Ivan Jobs
Department of History
Pacific University
2043 College Avenue
Forest Grove, OR 97116

Dr. Heather Montgomery
15 Oatlands Road
Oxford, OX2 0EU
United Kingdom

Call for Nominations for 2018 Fass-Sandin Article Prize in English

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2018 Fass-Sandin Article Prize in English

The Society for the History of Children and Youth (SHCY) is pleased to call for nominations for the best article in English on the history of children, childhood, or youth (broadly construed) published in 2018. The award consists of a plaque and a check for $250 US.

Nominations are invited from publishers, editors, and scholars, and self-nominations by authors. Current members of the SHCY award committee, the executive committee, and officers of the society are ineligible.

To nominate an article, send via email a PDF version of the article by January 15, 2019 to each of the Award Committee Members.

Carla Pascoe Leahy (Chair)
The University of Melbourne

Sarah E. Duff
Colby College

Hugh Morrison
University of Otago

Call for Proposals and Nominations for ChLA Grants and Awards

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Nominations and proposals for the following Children’s Literature Association awards and grants is now open and will close on Friday, February 1, 2019. Please note, there should be no identifying information included in the essay or proposal. Please, attach the cover page and contact information on a separate document.

Carol Gay Award – Honoring scholarly research by an undergraduate, the Carol Gay Award recognizes the author of an 8-15 page paper written during the previous year.

Graduate Student Essay Award – Comprised of both a Ph.D. and a separate master’s level award, the ChLA Graduate Student Essay Award recognizes the author of a 10-25 page paper written during the previous year.

Mentoring Award – Recognizing excellence in mentioning taking place within the ChLA and extending beyond the boundaries of the mentor’s own university, the Mentoring Award honors those who have contributed in significant ways to enhancing others’ scholarship and/or professional careers within the field of children’s literature over a substantial period of time.

Hannah Beiter Graduate Research Grant – Awarded annually, the Hannah Beiter Graduate Research Grants are intended to assist in original scholarship with the expectation that the undertaking will lead to publication or a conference presentation and contribute to the field of children’s literature criticism.

Diversity Research Grant – Initiated in 2013, the Diversity Research Grant supports research related to children’s and young adult cultural artifacts about populations that have been traditionally underrepresented or marginalized culturally and/or historically.

Faculty Research Grant – Awarded annually, the Faculty Research Grants are awarded for proposals dealing with criticism or original scholarship with the expectation that the undertaking will lead to publication and make a significant contribution to the field of children’s literature in the area of scholarship or criticism.

If you have any questions, please contact the ChLA office by email at

CFP – Playing at the Boundaries: An Interdisciplinary Forum on Play in Children’s Literature, Media and Culture

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PLAY2018: Playing at the Boundaries: An Interdisciplinary Forum on Play in Children’s Literature, Media and Culture
Cambridge University
Cambridge, UK, September 12-14, 2019

Confirmed Keynotes:

Marah Gubar – Associate Professor, MIT School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
Paul Ramchandani – LEGO Professor of Play in Education, Development and Learning, The University of Cambridge Faculty of Education

Metamorphosis and multiplicity have increasingly come to characterise the media landscape of the twenty-first century. Emerging technologies of production, distribution, and consumption not only allow texts to travel new and often unpredictable circuits, but also lower the thresholds of participation in cultural life, producing a new generation of “produsers” (Bruns 2008). In this environment, children’s literature, media and culture have gone mainstream, as stories overspill the edges of their texts and dissolve the boundaries that have conventionally separated different media forms and disciplines. At this juncture, we would like to invite scholars to join us in experimenting with the forms and shapes of our own discipline; to play, if you will.

The current cultural moment demands that scholars welcome approaches that are themselves nimble, dynamic, responsive and experimental, particularly from those of us who study childhood and its ephemera. Taking inspiration from play theorists such as Thomas Henricks, this conference proposes play as a metaphor through which to look anew at our field in this new era of border crossings. Play is not only action, but a mode of interaction and activity; a disposition, an experience and ultimately a context (Henricks ‘Theme and Variation’, 136). Such understandings of play open up new ways of thinking about the ways cultural products are engaged in everyday life – as a potential form of imaginative play, or an act through which texts becomes animated. Additionally, through their connotations of interaction and motion, they allow scholars to inhabit the intersections and overlaps between fields that are an increasingly common feature of the current cultural moment.

We therefore invite papers that explore the place of play in children’s literature, media and culture in experimental, transgressive, and creative ways. We encourage scholars from the fields of children’s literature, screen studies, games studies, media and communication, material culture and, of course, scholars studying play from both theoretical and empirical perspectives, to join us in considering the latent metacritical potentials of play and its diverse modes and forms in bridging disciplinary divides.

PSpecific topics include but are not limited to:

  • Text as plaything, playmate, playspace: the book as material object – as toy, as media, as technology, as haptic text etc.
  • Power Play: Play as criticism; the infantilisation of play; the role of play in demarcating high and low culture, adult and child culture, or traditional and experimental art
  • Play as aesthetic: What makes a text playful? What is the look and feel of a playful text?
  • History of Play: Play and material culture; evolution of play; cultural construction of play
  • Playing with texts: adaptation and transmediation in children’s literature, media and culture; the place of the child in relation to participatory cultures, fan studies etc.
  • Interplay: Analysing other media forms (comics, films, animation, comics, video games) from a children’s literature perspective; interdisciplinary approaches to the study of children’s literature media and culture and playing with theory
  • Performative Play: theater, animation, apps, games as playful forms; interactivity and embodiment in children’s media consumption
  • Play as subversion: play and agency; play and creativity
  • Wordplay: interpretation, meaning-making as form of creative play

Proposals of 250 words for a 20-minute paper should be sent, together with a 100-word bio, to by January 7, 2019. We also encourage panel and round table proposals, especially those that that seek to employ unconventional modes of presentation.

Job Posting for RA for Six Seasons Production Team

Call for applications

The Production Team invites applications for a Research Assistant to work on the Six Seasons of the Asiniskow Ithiniwak Project. Supported by a SSHRC Partnership grant, the Six Seasons project involves many partners and collaborators engaged in the vital work of reclaiming the languages, histories, and knowledges of the Asiniskow Ithiniwak (Rocky Cree). The Production Team’s major goals are to create a series of picture books and digital apps based on the six seasons of the Rocky Cree using information generated from the Story, History, and Archaeology teams. This research position will help collect material for an acoustic archaeology soundscape for inclusion in the production of the picture book app for the second text in the Six Seasons series. This position will include museum and archival visits, working with collection databases, and producing annotated bibliographies covering various aspects of related artistic, land-based, and experimental soundscape projects. Experience with the audio editing program Audacity is an asset but not necessary. The expectation is that the successful applicant will work 5-10 hours per week for approximately 10-12 weeks.

Eligibility: undergraduate students who have completed at least 60 credit hours and graduate students from related disciplines including, but not limited to, Anthropology, Education, English, Cultural Studies, History, History of Art, Indigenous Studies, and/or Writing and Rhetoric. All qualified students are encouraged to apply. In accordance with this project, preference will be given to Indigenous students.

Please address your letter of application to Dr. Jennifer Robinson, Department of English. Along with a letter, please include a resumé and the names of two faculty members who have agreed to provide references for you.

Please submit your application and direct any questions to:
Larissa Wodtke, Project Manager, Six Seasons of the Asiniskow Ithiniwak
Centre for Research in Young People’s Texts and Cultures (room 3C26)
Phone: 204-786-9351

Closing date for the receipt of applications is January 10, 2019.