Call for Nominations for 2015 IRSCL Book Award

As you all know, our 2015 Congress will be in Worcester, Great Britain, in August 2015. The Congress 2015 website is up and can be accessed through the Conferences page of the IRSCL website, at

We want to remind you to nominate books for consideration for the IRSCL Book Award. Books considered for the 2015 award must have been published during the period 2013-2014, must not have been nominated for an earlier IRSCL competition, and must deal with research on children’s literature or other forms of cultural texts for young people. Please note that books with a publication date of 2015 can be nominated first for the 2017 award. Authors can nominate their own books, or IRSCL members can nominate books by other members, as long as those nominating books and the authors of nominated books are IRSCL members whose membership is up to date.

In 2015, we have introduced a new category of competition for edited volumes. In other words, we will award up to two Book Awards in any competition, one for monographs and one for edited volumes.

Please email nominations to Astrid Surmatz before January 15, 2015, along with two hard copies of the book or confirmation that you have arranged for publishers to send nominated books directly to her. If the book has also been published electronically and is available through open access, please include the link in your nomination. Astrid’s contact details are as follows:

Astrid Surmatz
University of Amsterdam
Spuistraat 134
NL-1012 VB Amsterdam

IRCL Executive Editor and Reviews Editor Positions

The terms of office of both the IRCL Executive Editor and Reviews Editor expire during 2014. Scholars (normally mid-career or beyond) who would be interested in taking up one of these positions are invited to contact either IRCL Editor John Stephens (, and/or IRSCL President Mavis Reimer ( to express interest or to seek further information. These are honorary positions – IRSCL is not able to offer remuneration – but they are intellectually and professionally rewarding positions!

IRCL Executive Editor

Role and Duties

The Executive Editor is involved in both the intellectual and administrative functions of the journal:

  • Is the primary recipient of articles submitted to IRCL; acknowledges receipt of submitted articles
  • Deals with correspondence from contributors and would-be contributors
  • Reads submitted articles and works in consultation with the Editor to determine whether such an article is suitable for the journal and ready to be sent out to readers; conveys decision to author
  • Works in consultation with the Editor to identify appropriate expert readers for submitted work
  • Approaches proposed readers with an invitation to act for the journal
  • Works in consultation with the Editor to reach a decision as to publication/revision/rejection after readers’ reports have been received; sends readers’ reports to author (possibly in an edited or summarised form)
  • Works in consultation with the Editor to determine whether a paper has been revised satisfactorily
  • Works in conjunction with a copy-editor to prepare articles for publication
  • Sends copy-edited articles to contributors for checking and any final changes
  • Incorporates reviews sent from the Reviews Editor (sends to copy-editor)
  • Despatches assembled collection to the publisher (EUP) by 1 April and 1 September each year
  • Completes the Typescript Delivery Coversheet to despatch with the assembled articles
  • Sends a Copyright Assignment Form to each contributor
  • Coordinates page proof corrections (in conjunction with the Editor) and returns pages for correction to EUP

Other duties:

  • Consults with the publishing team at EUP once a year (either by personal visit or phone hook-up)
  • Performs other tasks related to the running of the journal which may come up from time to time
  • The journal has established a strong editing and mentoring tradition to assist contributors from NESB backgrounds to present their work at the highest level (these processes usually occur before articles are sent to readers). These tasks are principally performed by the Editor, but the Executive Editor may play a substantial role if s/he desires.
  • The Executive Editor may act proactively to invite possible contributors to submit work to the journal, and may, in consultation with the Editor, commission special articles.

The Editor may assist the Executive Editor with any of the above duties when this is needful and appropriate.

IRCL Reviews Editor

Role and Duties

  • To receive books sent from publishers, identify appropriate reviewers, and mail books for review to them (IRCL normally publishes 16 reviews per annum [8 in each issue])
  • To ensure that reviews submitted are of an appropriate scholarly style and standard; to suggest revisions where necessary
  • From time to time to mentor less experienced reviewers to help them achieve an appropriate level
  • To maintain a pool of reviewers
  • In February and in July each year, to deliver to the Executive Editor (Cc. to Editor) eight reviews ready for copy editing
  • To supply reviews for the Reviews section of the IRSCL website (longer reviews, less formal reviews, second reviews of a work already reviewed in IRCL, etc.)

Thinking of our colleagues in Japan

At this time we think of our many IRSCL members in Japan and wish them well. I have received a message from Yasuko Doi (Institute for Children’s Literature, Osaka), who says that as far as she knows our members are safe. More information as it is available.


Abstracts Translated into German

Our member Sonia Loidl has translated a selection of IRCL abstracts from English to German. These abstracts are available through the IRCL page of this website. Click on ‘Abstracts’ and you will find translations of abstracts from Volumes 1.1, 1.2 and 2.1.

New board for IRSCL

At the IRSCL General Membership meeting in Frankfurt, a new Board was voted in:

Clare Bradford, Australia

Mavis Reimer, Canada: Vice-President and Treasurer
Hélène Ehriander, Sweden: Awards and Grants Coordinator
Hans-Heino Ewers, Germany: Liaison with children’s literature national/regional associations
Kerry Mallan, Australia: Convenor of the 2011 IRSCL Conference in Brisbane, Australia, 2011
Rose-May Pham Dinh, France: Secretary

IRSCL research grant applications

Members of IRSCL are invited to apply for the 2009 IRSCL Research Grant, to be announced at our Congress in Frankfurt. The grant is worth US$1000 and is intended to encourage early career researchers in children’s literature. For guidelines, please see the relevant section of this website. Applications are due by March 1, 2009. Email your application as a Word document to Helene Ehriander.

IRSCL Travel Grant

We invite applications for travel grants of not more than US$1000 to enable IRSCL members to attend the Frankfurt Congress. This grant supports members who might not otherwise be able to travel to the Congress. For more information about applications, see the Grants section of this website, under ‘Travel Grants’. Applications should be emailed as Word documents to the Treasurer, Mavis Reimer, by March 1, 2009. Successful applicants will be notified in April, 2009.

IRSCL Board meeting and symposium in India

Members of the IRSCL Board held their 2008 meeting in India, in conjunction with an International Symposium, ‘Bind us Together: Global Perspectives on Multicultural Children’s Literature’ held by the Children’s Literature Association of India (CLAI) in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, September 8-10, 2008. Scholars from all over India and from Iran attended this symposium, which was ably organised by Hyacinth Pink of Nirmala College for Women. The festival season was in full swing while we were in Coimbatore, and below the symposium poster you can see a floral ‘welcome’ carpet.

Bind Us Together Symposium Poster

Floral Carpet

Research and teaching in children’s literature are growing rapidly in universities and colleges throughout India, where courses are gradually being introduced and increasing numbers of undergraduate and postgraduate students show a keen interest in studying children’s literature. Board members thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to learn about Indian children’s literature and about the scholarly projects of their Indian colleagues. The symposium ‘Bind us together’ incorporated around 45 papers in addition to plenary presentations and a lively session on courses and teaching strategies. Here is a photograph of the audience at the Inaugural Ceremony of the symposium.

Inaugural Ceremony Audience

On the first night of the symposium we were invited to a cultural programme at Nirmala College, where we were enchanted by displays of dancing reflecting various cultural traditions. In the photograph below you can see (l to r) Hans-Heino Ewers (IRSCL Vice-President), Professor Alida Allison (San Diego State University), me (Clare Bradford, IRSCL President) and Helene Ehriander (IRSCL Board member) wearing the beautiful garlands we were given.

IRSCL Board with Garlands

Here you can see a small sample of the dancing we enjoyed, performed by the gifted students of Nirmala College for Women.

Bind Us Together Dancers

IRSCL member Anto Thomas assisted Hyacinth in hosting our visit. Below is Anto with Hans-Heino Ewers:

Anto Thomas and Hans-Heino Ewers

More photographs of IRSCL Board members with Indian colleagues:

IRSCL Indian Colleagues

IRSCL Board and Indian Colleagues2

IRSCL Board and Indian Colleagues3

IRSCL Board and Indian Colleagues4

After the symposium Anto and the Board took the train to Cochin in Kerala, where we held further Board meetings, completing our work on September 11. The national newspaper The Hindu published two articles during our stay in Coimbatore, one on the symposium and the other on the importance of children’s literature for child readers and as an area of research.

After we completed our meetings I travelled with Anto Thomas to five cities (Trichur, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad and Delhi), in a lecture programme funded by the Australia-India Council. Everywhere I went I met enthusiastic scholars and students eager to engage in discussions of children’s literature.

Hans-Heino Ewers, convenor of the 19th Biennial IRSCL Congress in Frankfurt, August 2009, reported to the Board on plans for this Congress, at which we will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the founding of IRSCL. Hans-Heino and his Conference Committee are well advanced in their preparation, and delegates are assured of a warm welcome to Frankfurt. Please visit the Congress website for information about this important IRSCL event.