CFP – Encounters of the Playful Kind: Children’s Literature and Intergenerational Relationships

Encounters of the Playful Kind: Children’s Literature and Intergenerational Relationships
Justyna Deszcz-Tryhubczak and Barbara Kalla (Eds.)

Submissions are invited for chapters on possible intersections between children’s literature and play as spaces of encounters between imaginary childhoods and adulthoods as well as between real children and adults. On the one hand, the collection will draw on aesthetic approaches to children’s literature to explore the concept of intergenerational play as informing texts thematically and stylistically On the other hand, it will rely on methods developed within sociology of literature to discuss interage play as fostering extraliterary interactions between children and adults in the context of shared reading experiences. This volume will thus contribute to children’s literature studies, childhood studies, and play and culture studies.

Contributions are welcomed from a range of fields, such as literature, literacy and art education, popular culture, and games.

Possible areas of investigation:

  1. Literary representations of play shared between children and adults (e.g. family games, symbolic meanings of children’s play; intergenerational play as a device organizing the structure and poetics of a literary text; children’s play as inspiration of authors and illustrators; authors’ memories of childhood)
  2. Play as fostering reader relationships in informal and institutional contexts (e.g. child and adult readers as partners in home and school settings; meeting points between home literacies and formal reading instruction; intergenerational reading in cultural institutions; literary festivals; authors interacting with young readers outside the book; games developed out of books; children’s literature in the context of participatory culture)
  3. Metacritical and autoethnographic reflection on scholars’ play with child readers (e.g. the significance of play in researchers’ reading histories; professional reading vs. reading for pleasure; play with young readers as a research method)

An abstract of the proposal, maximum 300 words, with a brief CV of the author(s), maximum 40 words, should be submitted to Justyna Deszcz-Tryhubczak ( and Barbara Kalla ( by 30 September 2016. We will aim to reply to authors by 30 October 2016.

Abstracts accepted by the contributors will be used to produce a publishing proposal. Full manuscripts should be prepared by 31 January 2017 with the aim of completing revisions etc. for 30 June 2017 and publication by the end of 2017.