CFP – Being Human in Young Adult Literatures Symposium

Document Icon

CFP: Being Human in Young Adult Literatures Symposium
Friday 17th May 2019
University of Roehampton, London
National Centre for Research in Children’s Literature (NCRCL)

What does it mean to be human? Identity categories such as race, religion, gender, ability, size, and age intersect in definitions of the self, shaping how we construct ourselves and are perceived by others. Humanity is also under scrutiny, as other forms of consciousness help define what we are and what we are not. A growing corpus of young adult narratives across a range of genres and media attempt to engage with the plurality of the human experience.

The NCRCL’s symposium will consider how “being human” is explored through YA narratives, beginning with a keynote paper from renowned YA literature critic Dr. Alison Waller.

Suggested topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Sex and sexuality
  • Gender identity and/or expression
  • Religion
  • Race
  • Ability and/or disability
  • Mental health
  • A.I./cyborgs/post-human
  • Animal/human
  • Aging
  • Body image
  • Mortality and death
  • Genre and the construction of human experience
  • Performativity

This symposium invites papers from a range of disciplines addressing young adult narratives. It welcomes papers from postgraduate students, early career researchers, and academics.

Abstracts of no more than 250 words and a short bio should be sent to Emily Corbett at corbette@roehampton.ac.uk by 31 January 2019.

CFP – Atrocity in Children’s Literature

Document Icon

CFP: Atrocity in Children’s Literature
Collection edited by Victoria Nesfield and Philip Smith

“But what, then, is a naturalistic writer for children to do? Can he present the child with evil and an insoluble problem…. To give a child a picture of… gas chambers… or famines or the cruelties of a psychotic patient, and say, ‘Well, baby, this is how it is, what are you going to make of it?’ – that is surely unethical. If you suggest that there is a ‘solution’ to these monstrous facts, you are lying to the child. If you insist that there isn’t, you are overwhelming him with a load he is not strong enough yet to carry.”
-Ursula Le Guin, The Language of the Night, 1992

Atrocity, as Ursula Le Guin suggests, presents a problem to the writer of children’s literature. To represent events of such terrible magnitude and impersonal will as the Holocaust, the Transatlantic Slave Trade or the Rwandan Genocide such that they fit into a three-act structure with a comprehensible moral (to serve, in the words of Adrienne Kertzer, “our need for hope and happy endings”) is to do a disservice to the victims. Yet to confront the child with the fact of wide-scale violence without resolution is, Le Guin argues, to confront him of her with realities which may be emotionally disturbing and even damaging.

Others, among them CS Lewis and Elizabeth R Baer, have argued, conversely, that children’s literature represents an ideal site for (to use Baer’s term) “confrontational” texts, where children can first encounter historical truths in a safe and guided environment. These concerns can be even more pressing when one considers that the audience for such works may, themselves, be victims of atrocity either directly or by heritage. In such settings a literature of atrocity may help a child to make sense of his or her own life or the lives of his or her parents and grandparents.

Even if we accept the value of children’s literature which addresses atrocity, however, problems remain. Scholars such as Lawrence L Langer argue that the ethics of atrocity literature must be tempered by the question of what can be articulated – that atrocity as a lived experience must remain, at least in part, beyond the possibility of representation.

Despite these challenges, the question of atrocity remains a recurring theme in children’s literature. The 1980s saw an outpouring of works which engaged with the Holocaust and the trend shows no sign of abating, with new works such as (to name just one) Gavriel Savit’s Anna and the Swallow Man (2017). Indeed, the features of Holocaust literature for children have informed other texts which approach the question of atrocity such as, as Yoo Kyung Sung argues, Korean picture books which concern the lives of “comfort women” during World War II.

This edited collection seeks original contributions on the problem of atrocity in children’s literature. We are particularly interested in contributions which engage with comics for children, recent or otherwise under-discussed works, and international children’s literature. We welcome literary analysis, arguments which take a historical view, and reports from education professionals.

Abstracts of 100-200 words due by January 15. First drafts will be due June 15. Please send proposals to atrocityinchildrenslit@gmail.com.

Drs. Victoria Nesfield and Philip Smith are co-editors of The Struggle for Understanding: The Fiction of Elie Wiesel (forthcoming from SUNY Press in 2019). Dr. Philip Smith is the author of Reading Art Spiegelman (Routledge, 2015).

CFP – Beyond Boundaries: Authorship and Readership in Life Writing

Document Icon

Call for papers: Beyond Boundaries: Authorship and Readership in Life Writing
A two-day conference held at Tilburg University, the Netherlands, 24 and 25 October 2019

In “The Limits of Life Writing” David McCooey (2017) argues that in life-writing studies, the concept of limits or boundaries plays a central role. Since the rise of auto/biography studies in the 1970s and 1980s critical attention has been paid to generic limits and the limits concerning the auto/biographical subject. With respect to the former, discussions have evolved in particular around the boundaries between literary and factual writing, and between verbal, graphic, audio-visual and digital forms of life writing. In regard to the latter, academics since the 1990s have given attention to the expansion of auto/biographical subjects previously marginalized, which has deepened, among other things, the cross-cultural understanding of experience and identity. This expansion of auto/biographical subjects, but also the rise of social media as a medium for life writing have contested the limits of selfhood.

However, some other limits have gone largely unnoticed in life-writing research so far. Two of them will be the center of attention during this conference, one having to do with readership, and the other concerned with authorship. Until now little attention has been paid to the boundaries between life writing for adults on the one hand and life writing for young readers on the other. Crossing these boundaries can provide fruitful debates about how the reader matters and how studying the reception and addressed audiences of life writing is important.

Another issue that has not received much attention in life writing research is the boundary between life writing by adult authors and life narratives by young people. As Douglas and Poletti (2016) argue, the contribution of young writers to life writing has so far been largely overlooked. How do they relate to narratives by adults? How similar or different are the ways in which adult and young writers engage in modes of self-representation? And what is the influence of social media on life writing by young people?

We welcome presentations on authorship and readership in different forms of life writing by adult and young authors, marketed to adult and young readers. To what extent do authors use life writing to put issues of power, voice and agency on the public agenda? How do readers matter in the way authors of life writing address themselves to them? What are the similarities and differences between life writing for an adult audience and for young readers? What aspects define (successful) dual-audience life writing?

As life writing is relevant for academic disciplines such as the humanities and social sciences, in particular children’s literature, literature and culture studies, ethnography, anthropology and philosophy, we look forward to receiving proposals from researchers working in these fields, and to discussing disciplinary boundaries at the conference.

Subthemes are

  • Cultural diversity
  • Transnational life writing
  • Life writing in text and images
  • Offline and online life writing
  • Gender issues in life writing
  • LGTBQ life writing
  • Dual-audience life writing
  • Creating childhoods through life writing

Keynote speakers (confirmed): Prof.dr. Anna Poletti (Utrecht University, The Netherlands) and prof.dr. Lydia Kokkola (Lulea University, Sweden)

Conference organizers: Prof.dr. Helma van Lierop (Tilburg University), Dr. Jane McVeigh (University of Roehampton), Dr. Monica Soeting (European Journal of Life Writing)

Abstracts consisting of a maximum of 250 words, a title, an indication of the subtheme your abstract fits in best, name, institutional affiliation or status as independent scholar, email address and a short bio of no more than 150 words should be sent before 15 March 2019 to Prof.Dr. Helma van Lierop at h.vanlierop@tilburguniversity.edu.

CFP – Radical Young People’s Literature and Culture

Document Icon

Conference call for papers: Radical Young People’s Literature and Culture
The Irish Society for the Study of Children’s Literature
Friday, 29 and Saturday, 30 March 2019
Marino Institute of Education, Dublin 9, Ireland
Keynote address: Professor Kimberley Reynolds

It is now over ten years since Kimberley Reynolds highlighted the importance of radical dimensions of children’s literature in her book, Radical Children’s Literature: Future Visions and Aesthetic Transformations in Juvenile Fiction. Texts for young people have always been embedded in norms, concepts and systems regarding socialisation, education, and enculturation and offer empowering and disempowering possibilities for everyone who engages with them. Concepts of childhood, youth literature and youth culture are situated and operate within diverse contexts and contested spaces which are negotiated by readers, audiences, publishers, creative industries, authors, librarians, teachers, families, gate keepers, institutions, cultural movements, and political and religious groups. Radical youth literature challenges dominant expectations and norms about childhood, society, socialisation, and young people’s reading, acts as a force for change and encourages children and young adults to question the authority of those in power. In today’s world, the role and liberating possibilities of radical youth culture and literature have become even more urgent.

This conference will explore the experimental, subversive and/or disruptive potential of Irish and international literature and culture for young people. The conference will also consider the extent to which children’s and young-adult texts and culture can promote, cultivate and/or establish radical representations and ideas. In what ways is today’s radical youth literature different from that of earlier decades? What contemporary issues are addressed in radical youth literature and culture and how? To what extent have publishing, schools, libraries, multimedia and entertainment industries engaged with radical youth texts and radical youth culture? How is radical children’s and young adult literature and culture created, distributed, enacted and experienced?

Please email an abstract and a biographical note to isscl.committee@gmail.com by 5pm Friday, 7 December 2018. You will be notified of the outcome of the selection process in mid January 2019. 250-350-word abstracts are welcomed but not limited to the below areas and themes. Cuirfear fáilte roimh pháipéir trí Ghaeilge.

  • Class
  • Gender
  • Sexualities
  • Age and ageing
  • Ethnicity
  • Nationality
  • Embodiment
  • Performativity
  • Social engagement
  • Children’s rights
  • Engagement with new media, technologies, film, television, theatre etc.
  • Adaptation and/or translation
  • Visual narratives e.g. picturebooks, comics
  • Radical forms and/or genres
  • Fandom and fan cultures
  • Disruptive texts

Assistant Professor of Children’s and Young Adult Literature at California State University, Los Angeles

Cal State LA logo

Assistant Professor of Children’s and Young Adult Literature
Starting Date: Fall, 2019

Minimum Qualifications:

1) An earned doctorate (Ph.D.) in English or closely related discipline from an accredited institution (or equivalent) is required; however, applicants nearing completion of the doctorate (ABD) may be considered. For appointment, the doctorate must be completed by the date of appointment (8/19/2019).
2) Evidence of successful teaching at the undergraduate level.
3) Evidence of scholarly activity in the field of Children’s and/or Young Adult Literature.

Preferred Qualifications:

1) Evidence of teaching expertise in Children’s and Young Adult literature
2) Evidence of research in Children’s and Young Adult literature that spans multiple periods and productively intersects with one or more of the following: print culture; genders and sexualities studies; critical studies of race and ethnicity; environmental criticism; and/or English Education.

Duties:

The primary professional responsibilities of instructional faculty members are: teaching, research, scholarship and/or creative activity, and service to the University, profession and to the community. These responsibilities generally include: advising students, participation in campus and system-wide committees, maintaining office hours, working collaboratively and productively with colleagues, and participation in traditional academic functions.

The successful candidate will teach lower-division, upper-division, and graduate courses in the department and will design new courses in their area of expertise.

The successful candidate will be committed to the academic success of all of our students and to an environment that acknowledges, encourages, and celebrates diversity and differences. To this end, the successful candidate will work effectively, respectfully, and collaboratively in diverse, multicultural, and inclusive settings. In addition, the successful candidate will be ready to join faculty, staff, students, and administrators in our University’s shared commitment to the principles of engagement, service, and the public good.

Salary:

Initial salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience.

The University:

California State University, Los Angeles (Cal State LA) is the premier comprehensive public university in the heart of Los Angeles. Cal State LA is ranked number one in the United States for the upward mobility of its students. The University is dedicated to engagement, service, and the public good, offering nationally recognized programs in science, the arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education, and the humanities. Founded in 1947, Cal State LA serves more than 28,000 students and more than 240,000 distinguished alumni. A majority of the University’s alumni live in the Los Angeles region, enriching their communities and contributing to the vitality of the local economy. Cal State LA is focused on developing a new bioscience entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Los Angeles and San Gabriel Valley regions through partnerships with local business. To provide increased educational opportunities, Cal State LA recently opened a campus in downtown Los Angeles that offers graduate and undergraduate programs, as well as professional development and certificate programs. The university is home to the critically acclaimed Luckman Fine Arts Complex, Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs, Hertzberg-Davis Forensic Science Center, Hydrogen Research and Fueling Facility, Billie Jean King Sports Complex and the TV, Film and Media Center.

The College:

The College of Arts & Letters at California State University, Los Angeles, is an engaged, diverse, and creative community committed to nurturing the next generation of humanists and artists and to providing a distinctive liberal arts education to all Cal State LA students.

The College is home to nationally acclaimed undergraduate and graduate programs in the humanities and the visual, media, and performing arts, delivered by an award-winning faculty committed to helping students reach their full potential academically, professionally, creatively, and personally. Our nine departments (Art, Communication Studies, English, Liberal Studies, Modern Languages and Literatures, Music, Philosophy, Television, Film & Media Studies, and Theatre and Dance) include programs that lead to Bachelor and Masters of Arts degrees, Bachelor and Masters of Music degrees, and Masters of Arts and Masters of Fine Arts degrees.

Located in one of the most vibrant and creative cosmopolitan centers of the world, our students have access to renowned venues and a rich variety of scholars, artists, and performers from a host of fields and professions. Our campus boasts one of the most diverse student populations in the country, a fact that helps us to prepare Arts & Letters graduates for successful careers in today’s multicultural environment and global economy.

The Department:

The English Department at California State University, Los Angeles, cultivates students’ imaginations and critical skills through the intensive study of literature and language. Offering programs leading to the Bachelor of Arts and the Master of Arts degrees, the department provides courses that build on the traditional study of British and American literary history while encouraging students to further explore literary theory and criticism, world literatures and transnational critical paradigms, children’s literature, creative writing, rhetoric and composition, interdisciplinary cultural analysis, and the history and structure of the English language. Drawing on the richness of L.A.’s geographical and cultural context, the department equips students to see the study of literature and language as both personally enriching and publicly meaningful within their own communities. Those communities may be defined through the department’s direct engagement with the neighborhoods of East L.A. and the San Gabriel Valley or regarded as a global terrain, in which Oxford connects to Oaxaca and where ideas resonate from ancient Greece and Rome to the contemporary Pacific Rim.

Required Documentation:

Please submit the following to the Search Committee Chair at the email address below:
1) A cover letter specifically addressing minimum and preferred qualifications.
2) A curriculum vitae.
3) A list of three professional references.
4) A narrative statement describing your commitment to working effectively with faculty, staff, and students in a multicultural/multiethnic urban campus environment with a substantial population of first-generation students.
5) A University Application for Employment Form

Finalists will be asked to submit
1) Three current letters of recommendation
2) Official transcripts
3) A critical writing sample of app. 15 pages

Employment is contingent upon proof of eligibility to work in the United States.

Application:

Review of applications will begin November 15, 2018, and will continue until the position is filled.

Please address questions to English Department Chair:

Dr. Linda Greenberg
California State University, Los Angeles
Department of English, E&T A604
5151 State University Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90032
Phone: 323-343-4140
E-mail: linda.greenberg@calstatela.edu

Please submit application materials to Department Coordinator Stephanie Lai at Slai8@calstatela.edu. Please type “Children’s/YA Literature Application” in the subject line.

Assistant Professor in Childhood Studies at Rutgers University

Rutgers University logo

Assistant Professor Opening

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, CHILDHOOD STUDIES. The Department of Childhood Studies, Rutgers University—Camden invites applications for a tenure-track Assistant Professor of Childhood Studies with a start date of September 1, 2019.

Building on the strengths of its established, internationally recognized and interdisciplinary program, the department seeks an outstanding scholar of digital media, children and youth, and childhood. We seek a social scientist who is able to teach courses for both the Department of Childhood Studies as well as for the Digital Studies program. The successful candidate will have a research agenda focused on digital media, childhood, and children and youth. Qualitative and/or quantitative approaches to social research are equally welcome. The disciplinary affiliation of an applicant is of less importance than the quality of her/his research and a demonstrated appreciation for multidisciplinary approaches to the study of children and childhood.

The department aims to build strength in research on under-served populations in both national and international contexts (e.g., exceptional populations, health disparities, early childhood). Candidates are welcome to identify how their work might contribute to this departmental priority. We seek applicants eager to contribute to service roles in the Childhood Studies department, supervise doctoral and M.A. students in Childhood Studies and participate in Digital Studies research initiatives on campus.

Established in 2007 as the first doctoral-granting program in childhood studies in the USA, the Department graduated its first Ph.D. students in May 2013. Childhood Studies offers a robust, multidisciplinary curriculum for BA, MA, and Ph.D. degrees. It enjoys an active faculty and graduate student body whose work often integrates scholarship with social and community engagement. The Rutgers-Camden Digital Studies program offers an interdisciplinary major and minor, drawing on courses and expertise from faculty across the College of Arts and Sciences, and hosts an annual cohort of Digital Studies fellows. Both Childhood Studies and Digital Studies have hosted several major conferences, sponsor an array of lectures and symposia, and annually welcome visiting scholars from around the world. The appointment will be fully within the Department of Childhood Studies.

Rutgers University—Camden, a beautiful, urban campus expanding to accommodate the growth of Southern New Jersey, is located just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia. Part of Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, Rutgers University—Camden is an Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action Employer. Qualified applicants will be considered for employment without regard to race, creed, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, genetic information, protected veteran status, military service or any other category protected by law. As an institution, we value diversity of background and opinion, and prohibit discrimination or harassment on the basis of any legally protected class in the areas of hiring, recruitment, promotion, transfer, demotion, training, compensation, pay, fringe benefits, layoff, termination or any other terms and conditions of employment.

Applicants must have earned the Ph.D. in Childhood Studies, Education, Sociology, Anthropology, Public Policy, Geography, Communications, Health Sciences or a related field before beginning employment at Rutgers University. The duties of the assistant professorship include: engaging in an active research program; supervising MA and Ph.D. students; teaching four courses per year (typically including one graduate seminar per academic year) in the area of Childhood Studies, two of which will meet the requirements of Digital Studies courses; and participating fully in the life of the department in service and other capacities. Candidates may learn about the campus and the Department of Childhood Studies at http://childhood.camden.rutgers.edu/, the Digital Studies program at http://digitalstudies.camden.rutgers.edu/, and by contacting the Childhood Studies Department Chair, Dr. Daniel Cook (dtcook@camden.rutgers.edu).

Interested applicants should send: a current CV; a cover letter indicating the ways in which the applicant’s research adds to the Department of Childhood Studies’ strengths and focusing on how teaching and research may enhance a multidisciplinary program; three letters of recommendation; and an example of published scholarship. All parts of the application must be submitted electronically; no paper applications can be processed. For full consideration, applications should be received by November 6, 2018. Interested candidates should apply online at http://jobs.rutgers.edu/postings/75121.

Research Director of the Center for Children’s Books at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Center for Children's Books U of Illinois

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Research Director of the Center for Children’s Books
School of Information Sciences
https://jobs.illinois.edu/faculty-positions/job-details?jobID=103778&job=school-of-information-sciences-research-director-of-the-center-for-children-s-books-103778

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, School of Information Sciences, invites nominations and applications for the position of Research Director of the Center for Children’s Books. The School of Information Sciences at Illinois is an international leader in graduate education, and is home to world-class faculty, top-tier research, and a Master of Science in Library and Information Science program that is consistently ranked highly by U.S. News & World Report. Its mission is to lead the way in understanding the use of information in science, culture, society, commerce, and the diverse activities of our daily lives—and in doing so, change the world.

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer. Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit http://go.illinois.edu/EEO. To learn more about the University’s commitment to diversity, please visit http://www.inclusiveillinois.illinois.edu.

The Center for Children’s Books (CCB) at the School of Information Sciences supports critical inquiry, professional training, and educational outreach related to youth-focused literature, resources, and librarianship. The Center’s mission is to facilitate the creation and dissemination of exemplary and progressive research and scholarship related to all aspects of children’s and young adult literature; media and resources for young (age 0-18) audiences; youth experience and information use; and youth services librarianship. Formed in 1945 along with its affiliate unit, the journal The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, the Center has established an important role in the iSchool as the leader and supporter of youth-focused research, the host of scholar- and practitioner-focused events, and the home of a 16,000-volume special collection of youth literature.

The CCB seeks a Director with broad intellectual insights, top-tier scholarly credentials and accomplishments, and the leadership and managerial capacity to actualize a bold vision for its future. Reporting to the Associate Dean for Research, and in coordination with the faculty, the School Librarian Program coordinator, and the Editor of the Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, the Director will have responsibility for the strategic, programmatic, financial, fundraising, and management operations that support the mission and vision of the CCB and its role within the School of Information Sciences. Outstanding candidates will demonstrate strong commitment and experience in the education of youth and those who work with youth.

Candidates should hold a PhD in library and information science, children’s literature, or a related discipline, and have a distinguished record of teaching, research, and service that would warrant a tenured appointment at the rank of associate professor or full professor in the School.

The Director will:

  • Define and execute a strategic vision for the future by articulating the distinctive needs and opportunities of the CCB;
  • Attract external funding from federal agencies, corporations, foundations, and interested donors to support the Center’s mission and develop relevant partnerships; and,
  • Identify and realize emerging opportunities for new research, programs, and multidisciplinary initiatives that leverage the excellence of the Center and the breadth and strength of the School’s interdisciplinary culture.

The next Director is expected to bring:

  • The intellectual leadership and curiosity to direct a robust research program;
  • An appreciation of the Center’s history and its potential for the future;
  • An understanding of the connections between youth-focused research and professional practice;
  • An approach that sees youth as agents and creators in their own right and partners in research;
  • A boundary-crossing approach to youth experience that spans various disciplines, print and digital media, and physical and virtual spaces;
  • Outstanding communication skills and strong interpersonal skills;
  • A demonstrated commitment to diversity and inclusion;
  • A record of successful grant writing and/or fundraising;
  • An international-level reputation for scholarship and presentations in the field; and
  • Excellence in teaching.

Experience with the following is preferred:

  • Management of grant-funded projects;
  • Professional work with youth as a researcher and/or a practitioner;
  • Knowledge of and appreciation for diverse, historical, and contemporary children’s literature;
  • Work with diverse communities;
  • Supervision of student and professional staff.

This is a full-time, 9-month appointment starting in the fall of 2019; salary will be commensurate with experience.

The iSchool’s academic programs include the top-ranked Master of Science in Library and Information Science and one of the fastest growing programs at the University, the Master of Science in Information Management. In addition, the School offers a Doctor of Philosophy in Library and Information Science, the oldest program of its kind in the nation, an MS in Bioinformatics, a Certificate of Advanced Study, a Certificate of Advanced Study in Digital Libraries, and School Librarian Licensure Program. Plans for an undergraduate degree in information sciences are underway.

As a longstanding innovator in online education, the iSchool offers many programs for students who study from a distance. The total enrollment consists of more than 690 master’s students and nearly 50 doctoral students—including 195 international students—who learn with enthusiasm and contribute to the dynamic intellectual life of the School.

For more information, please visit http://ischool.illinois.edu/.

The university strongly encourages applications from individuals traditionally underrepresented in academia. Review of applications will continue until the position is filled. For full consideration, applications should be received by November 2, 2018. Candidates should provide a curriculum vitae, a letter of interest that addresses the candidate’s vision for the CCB, as well as the applicant’s motivation to apply, and a list of three professional references, including contact information. All requested information must be submitted for your application to be considered.

Interviews may be conducted before the closing date, although no hiring decisions will be made until after the search has closed. For further information regarding application procedures, you may contact Candy Edwards at cledward@illinois.edu.

CFP – Special Issue of IRCL: Instituting, Forgetting, and Remembering: (Post-)Colonial Practices of Child Removal in Children’s Media

IRCL Cover

Call for Papers
Special Issue of International Research in Children’s Literature
Editors: Lies Wesseling (lies.wesseling@maastrichtuniversity.nl) and Mavis Reimer (m.reimer@uwinnipeg.ca)

The (forcible) relocation and re-education of Indigenous children at the peripheries of empire was a wide-spread form of colonial governance. Children were considered to be more malleable than their adult counterparts, meaning that colonial regimes considered it possible to “take the Indian out of the child,” or to “breed the color out of aboriginals” or to transform Indigenous children up to the points at which they could make themselves useful as local intermediaries between the coloniser and colonised. Thus, Indigenous children have often figured as both targets and tools of Western civilising projects, as a tentative solution to the perennial problem of how to govern vast nations by means of a relatively small number of colonial administrators who, moreover, often lacked in-depth knowledge of the languages and cultures of the nations they were supposed to rule.

As Karen Sánchez-Eppler has argued convincingly in Dependent States, colonial strategies for governing the peripheries of empire and pedagogical regimes for raising metropolitan children were interdependent. Empires were “raised like children” and children were “civilized like savages.” The intimate link between imperial nation and domestic nursery may help to explain why children’s literature and affiliated media such as textbooks have played such a pivotal role in instituting, forgetting, and remembering the systematic instrumentalisation of Indigenous children in (post-)colonial contexts. Educative discourses such as children’s literature and textbooks were bent on piquing metropolitan children’s interest in the colonies in a concerted effort to recruit the next generation of colonial administrators, missionaries, and entrepreneurs. Later, these discourses were complicit in the embarrassed silence in which the colonial past was shrouded after decolonization. At the same time, however, the existence of these discourses and texts also preserved the past and eventually contributed to the disruption of the silence about the “stolen generations,” “lost birds,” deracinés.

This special issue aims to analyze how children’s literature and affiliated media instituted, silenced, and remembered forcible child removal from an international comparative perspective, including but also moving beyond the conventional focus on the former British Commonwealth. Topics may include, but are not limited to, the following issues:

  • How was the relocation and re-education of indigenous children “sold” to metropolitan children?
  • What versions of “family” and “family values” are propagated by children’s media that targets Indigenous children at the peripheries of empire?
  • How did children’s literature and textbooks respond to decolonisation?
  • Have exotic colonial themes, settings, and plot structures vanished from children’s media? If so, when did this occur?
  • When do efforts to re-present and remember child removal through children’s media gain ascendancy over silence and oblivion? How does children’s fiction relate to historiography in this respect?
  • Is the question of the “decolonisation of childhood” still topical? How do contemporary forms of neo-colonialism, post-colonialism, and anti-colonialism impact on the cultural construction of childhood as articulated by children’s media?

We particularly welcome transnational comparative approaches.

Abstracts due: 1 March 2019; completed papers 1 September 2019, publication July 2020.

CFP – Edited Collection on Sexuality and Sexual Identities in Literature for Young People

Document Icon

Call for Papers: Edited Collection on Sexuality and Sexual Identities in Literature for Young People

Acknowledging the capacity of literature to reflect and shape significant aspects of human development, this collection of essays takes as its central theme the representation of sexuality and sexual identities in texts for young people. Previous scholarship has established important connections between sexuality and gender, as well as sexuality and queerness, in literature for children and young adults. Investigations have also been made into the way particular genres and individual texts deal with desire, sex and sexuality.

This collection builds upon these individual approaches, while extending out to the analysis of various forms and incarnations of sexuality, across genres, texts and time periods. Keeping sexuality and sexual identities in writing for young people as its core focus, it will include analysis and discussion of representations of heterosexualities, homonormativity, trans subjectivities, asexuality, and the intersections between sexuality and other identity categories such as gender, race and class, across a range of texts and readerships.

We therefore welcome abstracts that revisit historical approaches to the study of childhood/adolescence and sexuality in literature, as well as those that provide contemporary and forward-looking models that take account of current and emerging sexual identities. Similarly, we welcome a wide range of theoretical approaches to this subject matter.

Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Sex and sexuality in historical literature for children
  • Same-sex desire in young adult fiction from Stonewall to the AIDS era
  • Hetero- and homo-normative families in picture books and junior fiction
  • “Straightness” in junior and/or young adult fiction
  • Queer spaces and queer geographies in writing for young people
  • Trans identities in children’s texts
  • Intersections between sexuality and race, class, gender, ability, age and/or nationality
  • Transnational approaches to sex and sexuality
  • Connections between romance narratives and ideologies around sex and sexuality
  • Religion/religious themes and sexual morality
  • “Post-gay” identities in millennial writing for young people
  • The role of genre in depictions of sex and sexuality for young people

Please submit abstracts of up to 300 words and a biographical note of up to 150 words to Dr Kristine Moruzi (kristine.moruzi@deakin.edu.au) and Dr Paul Venzo (paul.venzo@deakin.edu.au) by December 1, 2018. Full papers of 6000 words will be due by May 1, 2019.