Writing in 1834, the Scottish novelist Sir Walter Scott observed the following of Daniel Defoe’s most influential novel, Robinson Crusoe: ‘There is hardly an elf so devoid of imagination as not to have supposed for himself a solitary island in which he could act Robinson Crusoe, were it but the corners of the nursery’ (Biographical Memoirs, 279). While Scott’s comment evidently speaks to the pervasiveness of The Life and Strange Surprizing Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, published in 1719, it also more explicitly aligns the Robinson Crusoe story with childhood.
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.
++++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.
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:
RoundTable is a biannual peer-reviewed journal which actively promotes original and imaginative work by postgraduates and early career researchers within the fields of Creative Writing, Children’s Literature and English Literature.
RoundTable has a life beyond its pages and is invested in fostering a postgraduate community curious about research and practice beyond discipline boundaries.
Seeking Submissions for the first issue (spring 2017)
Academic articles | submit 250-word abstract & short biography Creative works | submit up to 3 poems or up to 1,500-word fiction piece & short biography
***The deadline for proposals extended to Thursday 30th June 2016***
23rd Annual NCRCL MA/IBBY UK Conference
Saturday 5th November 2016
Froebel College, University of Roehampton
Marvellous Imaginations – Extending thinking through picture book
This year’s conference explores the ways in which picture books contribute to the development of the child (or / and indeed the adult) through critical, imaginative, empathetic, creative or other responses. We will look at the international world of picture books; at trends and developments in publishing; at specific academic research on children’s interaction with picture books; and at some of the wide range of programmes and projects that use picture books as a starting point for their work, including established programmes like the Reader Organisation in Liverpool and new programmes like CLPE’s Power of Pictures and Amnesty’s work with the Greenaway awards. We will hear from eminent illustrators, including Laura Carlin who will be presented with her medal for winning Biennale of Illustration, Bratislava, one of the oldest international honours for children’s book illustrators, and about the new Klaus Flugge Prize for the most exciting newcomer to picture book illustration. The conference will include keynote presentations by well-known illustrators, academics, and key figures in the children’s literature world.
Proposals are welcomed for workshop sessions (20 minutes) on different aspects of picture book production and use, such as, but not only:
Cognitive approaches to children’s literature and picture books
Empathy and theory of mind
Exploring values through picture books
Growth mind set
Innovative/experimental picture books
Challenging picture books
How illustration works – the brain – influence of neuroscience
Wordless picture books
Crossover picture books
Creative thinking / creative responses to picture books
We welcome contributions from interested academics, authors, illustrators, publishers etc. in any of these areas.
The deadline for proposals extended to Thursday 30th June 2016. Please email a 200-word abstract (for a 20-minute paper), along with a short biography and affiliation to: Julia.Noyce@roehampton.ac.uk.
A brief reminder that the deadline for the call for papers for the 22nd annual NCRCL MA/IBBY UK Conference is fast approaching! The deadline for proposals is Wednesday 24th June 2015. The conference will be held on Saturday 14th November 2015 at Froebel College, University of Roehampton. The title for this year’s conference is: Steering the Craft: navigating the process of creating children’s books in the 21st century.More details are available on the blog and proposals are welcomed from interested academics, authors, illustrators, publishers etc. in any of these areas. Please email a 200-word abstract (for a 20-minute paper), along with a short biography and affiliation to: Julia.Noyce@roehampton.ac.uk.
Steering the Craft: navigating the process of creating children’s books in the 21st century
Ursula Le Guin provides the title for the 22nd annual NCRCL MA/IBBY UK Conference, a writer and thinker who has contributed a great deal to discourse surrounding the craft of writing. This year’s conference starts with the concerns of Le Guin’s Steering The Craft (1998), considering the role of writers in book production, and moves beyond this to explore the wider processes involved in creating books for young people. Developments in digital technology and social media, along with the shifting economic climate, have transformed the landscape of book production in recent years and this conference seeks to consider the implications of these changes for children’s books. We invite delegates and contributors to think about book production in the widest sense, taking in the various role of: authors; illustrators; translators; editors; designers; printers, agents; publishing houses/marketing teams; book reviewers; booksellers; curriculum design….and so on.
The conference will include keynote presentations by well-known writers, publishers, academics, and key figures in the children’s literature domain. Proposals are welcomed for workshop sessions (20 minutes) on the following or other areas related to the production of international children’s literature in the 21st century:
the translation of children’s books
book reviewing in newspapers/blogs/schools etc.
innovative/experimental fiction and its place in children’s literature
the role of independent booksellers and publishing presses
the author/illustrator’s routine and process
the art of publishing a picture book
pop-up books and paper engineering
history of book publishing – placing the current landscape in context
socio-cultural differences in book publishing
poetry – on the page and in performance
e-books, apps and digital platforms
book-binding, manuscript illumination, printing techniques, typography – crafts/trades associated with book production
academic perspectives – theoretical/critical discourse and its impact on book production
children’s writers in higher education
We welcome contributions from interested academics, authors, illustrators, publishers etc. in any of these areas.
The deadline for proposals is Wednesday 24th June 2015. Please email a 200-word abstract (for a 20-minute paper), along with a short biography and affiliation to: Julia.Noyce@roehampton.ac.uk.
Call for Papers on the theme of ‘Belonging is… an exploration of the right to be included and the barriers that must be overcome’
What does it mean to belong? How can literature help children as they struggle to relate to different groups at home, in school, and in the wider society? Who does children’s literature belong to? How can books help all children feel they belong? Children’s literature has traditionally been perceived as a place where all children can find a place and belong. But is this true?
The 21st annual IBBY UK/NCRCL MA conference looks to explore these questions and the concept of belonging in children’s literature.
The conference will include keynote presentations by writers, publishers and academics. Proposals are welcomed for parallel sessions (lasting about 20 minutes) on any relevant issues from any period in the history of international children’s literature. These might include:
traditionally excluded groups: LGBTQI, looked after children, disabled children, fostered and adopted children, Romany and traveller children, refugees
changes and developments in representations of ethnic diversity
the affect of inclusion or exclusion on the reader
the accessibility of children’s books
the place of issue books in exploring barriers to belonging
the promotion of human rights through literature
how children’s books can challenge stereotypes
the representation of children from all backgrounds
socio-economic status and stereotyping
how gendered marketing excludes children
reader vs revenue –what should be foremost in the mind of publishers
national identity – finding your culture in the books you read
learning about historically excluded groups through fiction and poetry
The deadline for proposals is July 31st 2014. Please email an abstract of approximately 200 words (for a 20-minute paper), along with a short biography and affiliation to Sue Mansfield of IBBY UK email@example.com
Find out more about IBBY UK here Details of past conferences can be found here
IBBY UK/NCRCL MA CONFERENCE, 9 NOVEMBER 2013
University of Roehampton, London.
Call for Papers on the theme of ‘Feast orFamine: Food and Children’s Literature’
As a focus for imaginative gratification, food has a long-standing relationship with children’s literature. Sinclair’s jam-filled ‘coach-wheel’ in The Holiday House (1839) revolutionised Evangelist writing, as culinary reward overshadows recrimination; marmalade sandwiches and honeypots are as iconic as the Paddington and Pooh bears who favour them; and the delights of feasting reach from the comic visualization of The Beano to the excessive wizardry of Hogwarts banqueting. Darker shadows also trouble this relationship though; Brenda’s philanthropy in Froggy’s Little Brother (1875) witnesses the starvation of mice and children, while Andy Mulligan’s Trash (2010) condemns capitalist greed. Moving beyond the immediate concerns of children’s literature, the rise of cup-cake culture in the early 21st century and the recent success of the BBC’s TheGreat British Bake Off point to an on-going fascination with food that extends beyond sustenance to creation, image and consumption. This evident cultural fascination draws in adults and children alike and thus it seems timely to consider the rich complexity of the relationship between food and children’s literature.
The conference will include keynote presentations by well-known writers, publishers and academics. Proposals are welcomed for workshop sessions (lasting about 20 minutes) on the following or other relevant issues/areas from any period in the history of international children’s literature:
the metaphoric treatment of food in children’s books;
the visual representation of food in comics, film or picture books;
the lack of food – famine, hunger, starvation, or rationing;
over-indulgence and greed;
food-writing and culinary trends related to childhood;
global cuisines – national, ethnic etc.
the historical representation of food in children’s books (non-fiction or fiction);
environmental, historical and political concerns with food distribution, farming, waste management or consumption – e.g in dystopian fiction;
the impact of body image in youth culture – e.g. literary engagement with diet, health issues or eating disorders;
oral fixations of early childhood;
the consumption of flesh, body or blood: vampirism, cannibalism etc.;
food in fairy tales, fantasy literature and myth – e.g. animate and magical food;
food and power – the giving and withholding of food;
bad food or poison;
gender issues: e.g. feminist engagement with nurture, nature and mothering;
food and celebration or socializing – birthday cake, honorary banquets/feasts or tea parties.
We welcome contributions from interested academics and others researchers in any of these areas.
The deadline for proposals is 19th July 2013 . Please email a 200-word abstract (for a 20-minute paper), along with a short biography and affiliation to firstname.lastname@example.org.