Monday, March 5, 2018

Upcoming CFPS for Children's Literature

Calling all Scholars! Here is our updated list on Call for Papers for Conferences and Book Chapters. Please check the specific CFP webpage for more detailed information regarding submissions. Our earliest deadline on this page is for March 15th, 2018. Good luck with your research and writing!

Consuming Cultures in Children's and Young Adult Literature and Cultures
Midwest Modern Language Convention

When: November 15-18, 2018
Where: Kansas City, Missouri
Deadline for Submissions: April 5, 2018
How to Apply: 250-word abstract along with presenter name, institutional affiliation, e-mail address, paper title, and a CV. Email to

Critics such as James Kincaid, Kathryn Bond Stockton, Michelle Martin, Philippe Ariès, and Suzanne Linn have written about childhood and adolescence as something we consume, criticize, and commercialize, whilst simultaneously romanticizing and desiring. In Consuming Kids (2004), Suzanne Linn suggests consumerist culture is conducting a “hostile takeover” of childhood and adolescence. While cultural consumption of childhood and adolescence has increased, these spheres are likewise being offered up as commercial commodities across medias. We seek papers that explore all aspects of Children’s and Young Adult Literature, as well as those addressing the conference theme of consuming cultures.

Editing and Engineering Children's Literature
Modern Language Association Convention

When: January 3, 2019
Where: Chicago, Illinois  
Deadline for Submissions: March 15, 2018
How to Apply: Please send 500-word paper proposals and 2-page CVs to Ramona Caponegro (
NOTE: The MLA Convention websites states the deadline for submissions is March 1st, but the UPENN website has an updated March 15th deadline. Please contact Ramona Caponegro for more information.

Though Roland Barthes and other scholars have argued for the death of the author, authors and illustrators—as creators and individuals—have remained at the forefront of children’s and young adult literature, with some even gaining celebrity status beyond the field of children’s books. While literary celebrities are neither new nor unique to children’s and young adult literature, the increasing franchising and shifting sociocultural expectations within the children’s book industry have led to a greater investment in the creators, as well as their works. Yet the creation and promotion of children’s and young adult literature depends on many individuals who may only be mentioned in books’ acknowledgements sections or who may go unrecognized completely, and the opportunities to work within and influence children’s and young adult literature have multiplied as the field has become increasingly professionalized.

Since John Newbery’s launch of his popular and profitable illustrated “toy” books in the 1740s, the industry of children’s publishing has expanded enormously and has been marked by periods of great change. In the past few decades, major publishing houses have consolidated, self-publishing has grown, and renewed attention has been given to issues of diversity (and the lack of diversity) within the industry. As children’s publishing has become a larger and more profitable industry, the roles of agents and reviewers have increased, affecting both the field of children’s literature as a whole and the careers of individual authors and illustrators. 

Moreover, the creation of MFA programs specifically for aspiring children’s and young adult authors and illustrators has also contributed to the professionalization of the field. Similarly, organizations such as the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and the Highlights Foundation provide conferences and workshops to people seeking to improve their craft and to break into children’s publishing, furthering the understanding that creating books for young people is a complicated and specialized practice.

In addition to the commercial transactions related to publication and professionalization, children’s literature has also been the site of numerous cultural transactions. Librarians, teachers, and members of award committees have long been described as arbitrators, taste-makers, and promoters within the field, and activists have founded groups such as the Council on Interracial Books for Children and We Need Diverse Books to advocate for greater diversity within the field. 

This non-guaranteed session examines historical and contemporary figures, events, trends, practices, and organizations that have shaped the children’s literature industry, as well as the careers of individual artists within it.  Which individuals and professions have received prominence in the field and why? How has the promotion of children’s literature and its creators changed over time? How have the field’s development and the identified key figures within it been presented by and to different audiences: aspiring writers, illustrators, and publishers; scholars; young people; and the general public? How might the focus on individual successes within children’s literature compare to a similar focus in other industries?

Possible topics include but are not limited to:
  • changing practices within the business of children’s literature, such as acquisitions, production, and marketing
  • individuals, organizations, and campaigns that work to combat the roles that racism, sexism, classism, and ableism have played in shaping the field
  • histories of children’s publishing houses
  • personal and professional relationships between authors and illustrators and their editors and agents
  • archival research about the evolution of a manuscript for a young audience
  • mentorship within children’s literature
  • the changing credentialing of authors and illustrators
  • depictions of authors, illustrators, and other book professionals within works of children’s literature
  • recurrent tropes within author/illustrator studies in children’s literature
  • the roles of technology and social media in creating movements within and around children’s literature
  • how changes in bookselling and the marketplace affect the creation and publication of works of children’s literature
  • how publishing practices and standards vary in different countries
  • museum exhibits about the history of children’s literature

South Atlantic Modern Language Association Conference
(NOTE: Submission Deadlines May Differ for Each Panel)
When: November 2-4, 2018
Where: Birmingham, Alabama

Victorian/Edwardian Adventure Fiction and Social Change
Deadline for Submissions: May 11th, 2018
How to Apply: Please submit a 250-word abstract, brief biographical statement (inclusive of academic affiliation and contact information), and A/V requirements to Jennifer Fuller, Idaho State University, at

This panel welcomes submissions that explore how popular adventure fiction/boy’s books of the long nineteenth century were used as agents of social change. While often viewed as works for adolescents, such novels played subversive roles in dismantling traditional ideas and establishing new cultural norms. We are especially interested in papers that explore novels set in locations outside the colonial center that worked to challenge British assumptions about education/the educational system. Potential authors could include Joseph Conrad, Robert Louis Stevenson, H.G. Wells, or Edgar Rice Burroughs as well as lesser-known authors such as Louis Becke or authors popularized through translation, such as Jules Verne.

The Social Justice Interventions #WENEEDDIVERSEBOOKS
Deadline for Submissions: May 31st, 2018
How to Apply: Email 250-word proposal and a short biography to

Recent activist work in the field of children's and young adult literature has focused on the lack of diverse protagonists and created a variety of initiatives to change that fact, including the #weneeddiversebooks campaign. The desire to improve diverse representations in children’s and young adult literature aligns with recent research into how an individual comes to understand that others have complex inner lives that may differ from our own, often studied in psychology as Theory of the Mind (ToM). Recent studies of ToM and fiction show literature’s power, as an art form, to increase readers’ empathy and engagement with others. Both minority readers and privileged populations, therefore, need diverse books. This panel at SAMLA 90, dedicated to “Fighters from the Margins,” asks for essays that investigate the power of diverse books, in order to continue the work of #weneeddiversebooks. Some possible avenues of investigation are:
  • Intersections of #weneeddiversebooks and #blacklivesmatter
  • Forgotten or undertheorized books with diverse protagonists
  • Power of visual communication to represent diversity in picture books or comics
  • Diversity represented outside the confines of historical tragedy (Holocaust, Japanese internment, slavery, Jim Crow, Native American genocide, etc.)
  • Intersectional analyses that explore gender, sexuality, ability in addition to racial diversity 
The Metaphor of the Monster
Classical & Modern Languages & Literatures Symposium

When: September 21 - 22, 2018
Where: Mississippi State University in Starkville, Mississippi  
Deadline for Submissions: July 1st, 2018
How to Apply: Email 300-word abstract along with additional information to Dr. Silvia Arroyo at

Mermaids, giants, gorgons, harpies, dragons, cyclopes, hermaphrodites, cannibals,amazons, krakens, werewolves, barbarians, savages, zombies, vampires, angels, demons–               all of those inhabit and represent our deepest fears of attack and hybridization, but also our deepest desires of transgression. Frequently described in antithetical terms, monsters were frequently read in the past as holy inscriptions and proofs of the variety and beauty of the world created by God, or as threats to civilization and order. These opposing views on the monster show the radically different values that have been assigned to monsters since they started to permeate the human imagination in manuscripts, maps, and books.
Their hybridity challenges natural order and escapes taxonomy, thus problematizing our epistemological certainties. Inhabiting the margins of society, monsters also police social laws and show the consequences of transgressions on their own deformed bodies. Moreover, they are pervasive in nature and metamorphose into something else in different historicalthey are pervasive in nature and metamorphose into something else in different historical periods in order to embody the fears of that age, never to disappear from our imagination.

The 2018 Classical & Modern Languages and Literatures Symposium focuses on the concept of monstrosity as a cultural construct in literature, science, and art, and the ways in which the monster has been shaped, used, and interpreted as metaphor by scientists, writers, and artists in order to depict otherness, hybridization, threat to hegemonic order, and transgression. 
We accept submissions in English that explore monstrosity from various disciplinary or interdisciplinary angles. Topics might include, but are not limited to:
-Representation in literature/art of different forms of monstrosity Gendered- or queer-focused studies of monstrosity
-The depiction of the Other as monster, and the depiction of marginalized communities
-Hybridity, miscegenation, and the problem of categorizing Cartography, margins of civilization
-Books as monsters
-Transgressive subjects as monsters
-The medicalization of the monster: monstrosity in medical discourse; monsters within: parasites, viruses, and illness
-Ecocritical approaches to the topic: humans as ""parasites"" and ""predators"" Dystopian depictions of the urban space as a monstrosity
-The monster as spectacle, freak shows Deconstructing monstrosity through inclusion"
-Teaching monstrosity

2018 Science Fictions, Popular Cultures Call for Presentations
2018 HawaiiCON at The Big Island

When: September 13-16, 2018
Where: Kona Coast on The Big Island of Hawaii
Deadline for Submissions: April 1st, 2018
How to Apply: 200-300 word summary abstracts and 100-word biographical sketches are to be submitted to Conference Co-Chair Carrie J. Cole using the online form available by clicking here.  Academic, peer-reviewed proceedings will be published at the conclusion of this conference.

Announcing SCIENCE FICTIONS, POPULAR CULTURES: devoted to cross-disciplinary, cross-genre, and cross-media scholarship.

SCIENCE FICTIONS, POPULAR CULTURES is an academic conference which runs in conjunction with HawaiiCon (September 13-16, 2018) with an opening reception on Thursday evening) on the sunny western Kona side of the Big Island of Hawaii at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel.  

The inaugural theme of SCIENCE FICTIONS, POPULAR CULTURES is: Beyond Boundaries.

        Just as science fiction adventures go where none had gone...
        Just as artists are not bounded by one media or platform...
        Just as science pushes the limits of what is fiction to discover what is fact...
        Just as science fiction constantly defies and defines the parameters of genre...
        Just as popular culture erases the divides of academic disciplines...

SCIENCE FICTIONS, POPULAR CULTURES seeks to both defy and redefine how the academy views science fiction and popular culture—and the research, scholarship and creative endeavors of those working across these fields. An academic, peer-reviewed and refereed Conference Proceedings will be published in conjunction with the event.  The 2017 Proceedings are available for purchase on Amazon here.

SCIENCE FICTIONS, POPULAR CULTURES is soliciting 20-minute academic presentations from a wide spectrum of disciplines addressing the narratives and performances of science, science fiction, and popular entertainment across media, platforms, and cultures. As scholars, we create intersections with public programming at HawaiiCon which leverages the intellectual engagement audiences bring to their enthusiastic appreciation and deep knowledge of pop culture. The growing list of entertainers, authors, and actors attending who you can interact with are listed online.

While we are particularly interested in creating intersections with programming at HawaiiCon, all suitable, scholarly academic presentations of science fiction and popular culture will be considered. Possible topics include but are not limited to:

        World-building in genres & across media
        Popular interpretations and implications of Science Fictions
        Science in/of Science Fiction
        Playing Science/Science Fiction (cosplay, games, gaming)
        Star Wars vs Star Trek: Who Has Better Astronomy?
        Hidden Mathematics Revealed in Science Fiction
        Encryption and Privacy in Science Fiction and Daily Life
        Time Travel, Special Relativity, and Imperial Cruiser Travel Times
        STEM, STEAM, and Science Fiction
        The Science of World-building in the Genre
        Science as Popular Culture and the Popularity of Science
        Teaching of/with Science Fiction (across disciplines)
        Teaching College Classes with Comics and Popular Culture
        Translating/Adapting Science Fiction across media and cultures
        Interdisciplinary Science Fictions
        Cultures of Science Fictions
        Cultures of Science Fiction fandom
        Performing Science/Science Fiction (live and mediated)
        What Fuels Serenity? Real Propulsion Systems in Science Fiction Spaceships
        Firearms VS Vampires:  Which Firearms and Ammo Should Buffy Carry?
        Playing Science/Science Fiction (cosplay, games, gaming)

Neglected Newberys: A Critical Reassessment at the Centennial
Call for Book Chapters

Deadline for Submissions: April 1, 2018
How to Apply: Email 500-word initial proposal to the editors ( and and for access to the spreadsheet of books on which we are soliciting contributions, contributor resources, and additional specifications to ensure continuity throughout the volume.

In anticipation of the one hundredth anniversary of the American Library Association’s Newbery Medal (1922-2022), submissions are welcomed for a volume devoted to critically-neglected Newbery Award-winners.
About the Volume
Since the inception of the Newbery Medal in 1922, Newbery novels have had an outsized influence on American children’s literature, figuring perennially on publisher’s lists, on library and bookstore shelves, and in K-12 school curricula. As such, they offer a compelling window into the history of U.S. children’s literature and publishing as well as changing societal attitudes about what books are “best” for American children. Nevertheless, many Newbery Award winners—even the most popular and frequently taught titles—have attracted scant critical attention. 
This volume offers a critically- and historically-grounded analysis of representative Newbery Medal books and interrogates the disjunction between the books’ omnipresence and influence, on the one hand, and the critical silence surrounding them, on the other.
The editors seek at least one previously unpublished essay per decade (1920s-2010s), with each essay to focus primarily on a single Newbery Medal (not Newbery Honor) title for which little or no literary scholarship exists. We welcome submissions from both emerging and established scholars.
We specifically seek a diversity of Newbery authors, genres, themes, and book settings, but also investigations of how diversity is treated or, especially for earlier works, silenced in the texts.
Avenues for exploration include: neglected categories and sub-genres (horse books, maritime adventure stories, regional literature, retold folktales, one-hit wonders for children by well-known authors); reception and book history (alterations of text to avoid offensive language and imagery, both immediately after the Medal and decades later); critical readings of problematic texts; Newbery winners and their archives; hypotheses regarding critical neglect: the rise of Children’s Literature as an academic field long after the Medal’s inception; the disjunction between the Newbery’s historical whiteness and heteronormativity and current developments in literary criticism; a possible disconnect between librarians who award the medal, K-12 teachers who recommend the books, and university professors who are rewarded for publishing literary criticism.

Transatlantic Girlhood in Nineteenth-Century Literature Collection
Call for Book Chapters

Deadline for Submissions: June 30, 2018
How to Apply: Email 500-word abstract and brief CV (as an attachment in Word) to Robin Cadwallader and LuElla D’Amico at

Although often dubbed “domestic” novelists, nineteenth-century women writers often featured girl protagonists who travelled, and much of the time this travel wasn’t relegated to a local or even national scale. Rather, like Amy in Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, fictional girls on both sides of the Atlantic often journeyed abroad, usually with the intent of learning more about themselves, their relationships with others, and even their country. This collection will interrogate both literal and metaphorical exchanges of culture that happened in nineteenth-century girls’ fiction. Creative approaches to thinking about transatlantic travel and how it had an impact on girl culture in both Europe and America are invited. For instance, contributors could explore novels like Anna Sewell’s Black Beauty, Maria Susanna Cummins’s The Lamplighter, and E.D.E.N. Southworth’s The Hidden Hand, all of which earned popularity in both Europe and America.  Likewise, the editors are eager to read submissions centering on girls’ magazines, journals, and etiquette books, so long as these were read in both Europe and America.

The book will comprise three sections: girl characters travelling, books travelling, and girl readers travelling. The first section will focus on how young female characters in novels approach and respond to travelling abroad, the second will consider how books were received and responded to on both sides of the Atlantic by the masses and critics alike, and the third section will examine how the books inspired their young readers to travel themselves and critically examine their cultural mores.

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