Call for Papers: Crafts and Hobbies

++++New Deadline for proposals – Friday 13 July++++

25th Annual NCRCL MA/IBBY UK Conference 

Saturday 10th November 2018
Digby Stuart College, University of Roehampton

Crafts and Hobbies in Children’s Books

This year’s conference explores the significance of crafts and hobbies as theme, practice, motif, educational tool and generational bridge.  We will be thinking about the historical shifts in the role and significance of these activities in childhood experience as depicted in a wide range of texts.  We will examine the role of crafting and hobbies in children’s fiction and in picture books; think about the role of books in craft and hobby activities (including the handbooks of the Brownies, Scouts and Woodcraft Folk and the annuals of children’s TV shows such as Blue Peter); and consider the craft dimensions of books as material objects, looking at the use of collage and textile as illustrative components, at paper-cutting and pop-up books, and at books that are themselves craft or hobby objects (model-making books, sticker books).  Discussion will cover the gendering of crafts and hobbies, the definition of a hobby (as distinct from a game or a toy), the vexed boundaries between arts and crafts, and craft as domestic or artisanal. Materials from the archives of the constituent colleges of the University of Roehampton will be on show, including weaving samples and patterns used in early Froebelian education and embroidery samplers from the Whitelands archive.  The conference will include keynote presentations by well-known illustrators and craft practitioners, academics, and key figures in the children’s literature world.  We will hear from Dr Jane Carroll of Trinity College, Dublin, an international specialist in the relationship between craft and children’s literature.  As this year’s conference marks 25 years of the partnership between IBBY UK and the NCRCL and we are delighted that Professor Kim Reynolds, a long-time friend of both organisations, will be joining us for the celebration.

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Faith Ringgold “Tar Beach (Part I from the Woman on a Bridge series)” (1988) via Guggenheim

Proposals are welcomed for individual papers (20 minutes) on different aspects of craft and hobbies in relation to children’s books and reading, such as, but not only:

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NCRCL PhD Day 2018

Emily Corbett, PhD student with the NCRCL, reports on the 2018 PhD Day, which she organised this year.

On Thursday 17th May 2018, the NCRCL hosted its annual PhD Day at the University of Roehampton. The day was rich with stimulating doctoral research and great baking (as expected per our high NCRCL Bake-Off competition standard)!

The following papers were given by the NCRCL’s PhD candidates, enjoyed by a room full of eminent scholars, PhD peers, MA students and friends of the department:

‘Reflecting the visual world of the Victorians in a neo-Victorian young adult novel’ by Harriet Salisbury.

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