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The Child and the Book Conference
Children’s Literature – Fractures and Disruptions
University of Aveiro (26-28 March 2015) 


The Child and the Book Conference is an international conference, which offers graduate/post graduate scholars the opportunity to present papers on their current research in the interdisciplinary field of children’s literature. The Child and the Book Conference affords both a space for the review and sharing of knowledge about those areas of children’s literature studies currently being researched, and a meaningful forum for debate and collaboration between novice and experienced scholars. Importantly, the conference also seeks to bring together approaches to children’s literature from around the world.

The inaugural The Child and the Book Conference was held at Roehampton University, England, in 2004. Successive conferences were organised at the University of Antwerp, Belgium (2005); the University of Newcastle, England (2006); Boğaziçi University, Turkey (2007); Buffalo State College, USA (2008); Vancouver Island University, Canada (2009); Oslo University, Norway (2011); Cambdrige University, UK (2012); Padua University, Italy (2013); and the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece (2014).

The 11th Child and the Book Conference will be held in 2015 at the University of Aveiro, Portugal, and will discuss specific aspects related to the topic Children’s Literature – Fractures and Disruptions. Within the universe of fracturing themes, studies related to violence, war, sexuality or politics would be of relevance, with papers on the emergence and visibility of these subjects in modern and contemporary production, and in school selections. Fracture and disruption could also be seen as a question of genre, through the discussion of hybrid works which flagrantly abuse or misuse styles and techniques, violate unspoken rules or are considered in the vanguard of literary production. Thus, papers discussing moments or movements of rupture in the literary universe aimed at younger readers would be welcomed. Other approximations to the theme of congress will be valued with a view to receiving diversity in proposals and contributions for reflection and discussion, in particular in the fields of reception, education, translation, illustrator/author and publisher studies.

The following could be considered:

1. Questions fracture and disruption which include war, terrorism; natural disasters; political issues; natural disasters; sex and sexuality; child abuse/child maltreatment, sexual offending, homelessness, orphanhood, poverty; imprisonment, abduction, banishment and exodus, refuge and exile, racism and sexism, alcoholism and drugs; paranormal experiences.

2. Hybrid and ‘pushing the frontier’ genres in literary writing and/or illustration, such as picturebooks, graphic novels or other challenging genres.

3. Vanguard literature and works of rupture – Avant-garde and new illustration; modernist picturebooks; surrealism for children; avant-garde and “gender trouble”; anti-authoritarian fantasies; avant-garde experiments today (e.g. interactive fiction, multimedia texts).

4. Translating fracture and disruption in children’s literature – manipulation and purification of “unusualness” in fiction; translating aesthetic ruptures; culture-specific translations; reception and transfer case studies; educational approaches, publishing case studies.

5. Fracture, disrupture and crossover fiction.

6. Banned books in schools and libraries.

It is hoped that a selection of the presented papers can be published with a view to accompanying the tradition of previous The Child and the Book Conference conferences.

Email:  DE-child.book@ua.pt