CFP – Slavic Worlds of Imagination 3: Metamorphoses

International Conference “Slavic Worlds of Imagination 3: Metamorphoses”
23-24 September 2019, Cracow, Poland

The Children’s and Youth Literature Research Centre of the Faculty of Polish Studies and the Institute of Slavonic Philology (Jagiellonian University) are hosting the third meeting in the cycle “Slavic Worlds of Imagination.” This time we would like to focus on the potential of changes, metamorphoses, and transformations in Slavic literatures for children, youth and fantasy, along with literary work based on the Bildungsroman tradition. We invite reflections and discussion on the following topics:

  • metamorphoses of characters in children’s and youth literatures of Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe (metamorphoses in fairy tales, changing people into animals or plants and opposite, magical transformations)
  • moral metamorphoses of characters, transgressions of opposition good-evil in Slavic children’s and youth literature and in fantasy
  • coming through the life stages, rites of passage
  • Slavic Bildungsroman, narrations about the adolescence in literatures of Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe
  • metamorphoses of literary genres in the area of children’s and youth literature
  • motif of the evanescence in Slavic literature for children and youth and in fantasy
  • historical, social, and cultural transformations in Slavic literature for children and youth and in fantasy
  • generation changes in literature, generation gap
  • resistance to the change
  • changes in reception of certain literary works, changes in literary canons
  • changes of literary works for adults into children’s literature and vice-versa
  • transformations in the future (science fiction in Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe)
  • changes in the aesthetic of children’s books in Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe

Please send your application to by 1 May 2019. For more information, see:

CFP – Adapting Children’s and Young Adult Novels into Anglophone Television Series

Call for Papers
International Conference by GUEST Normandie
Adapting Children’s and Young Adult Novels into Anglophone Television Series
Rouen Normandy University, 5-6 September 2019

Following up on its research programme exploring audiovisual serial fiction as narrative, aesthetic and ideological works of art, present on an ever-increasing number of platforms, the research project GUEST Season 2 is organizing on the 5th and 6th of September 2019, in partnership with the research laboratory ÉRIAC (Équipe de Recherche Interdisciplinaire sur les Aires Culturelles), an international conference dedicated to Anglophone television series adapted from children’s and Young Adult novels.

Serialised television adaptations of children’s literature have existed for quite some time, especially in the English-speaking world (The Famous Five, ITV, 1978-9; The Chronicles of Narnia, BBC, 1988-90; The Borrowers, BBC 2, 1992, …), providing a logical continuation to the tradition of episodic fiction by novelists writing for children and young adults. The “principle of the proliferation of narratives moving from one medium to another” is itself a natural extension of the growing trend in the world of youth literature publishing to create “hybridised transmedia products”, such as toy books or CD books and other by-products (Letourneux 2011 : § 5), a practice which contributes to showcasing the existence of the original works.

Such a tradition of novel adaptations for the small screen, which formed a substantial part of BBC programmes for young spectators, in particular up to the 1990s (Messenger Davies 2005: 131), has recently been rekindled by the contemporary craze for TV series of all kinds. The trend for « sériephilie » (Glevarec 2012) may account for the growing tendency to cater for an even wider audience by targetting young adults or mature teenagers, and attracting younger consumers who are more and more seduced by transmediated cultural products — all the more so as these material child[ren] (Buckingham 2011) may be more prone than adult viewers to enjoy repetition and to feel connected to familiar characters and worlds.

Children’s literature itself has been increasingly promoted as a legitimate field of study over the past decades, and the commercial success which crowned the publication of certain huge best-sellers at the turn of the 21st century has definitely integrated children’s literature into the bulk of mass culture production as well as into its subsequent process of commodification (Zipes 1997 and 2001, Taxel 2002). Because of such a massive market expansion, children’s literature has become a privileged source of inspiration for the writing of scripts for the big screen, and today for the small screen too. As Matthieu Letourneux explains, “the majority of films meant for young spectators are based on literary narratives and the copyrights of children literature’s biggest hits are systematically bought by publishers” (2017 : 384) with a view to making the most of the “multi-exploitation” of the fictional story (Ferrier 2009).

The current boom of children’s literature being turned into television series appears to be the continuation of the phenomenon of film adaptations based upon serialised novels, whether we think of fantasy, of “bit lit” (vampire romances) or of dystopian (i.e. counter-utopian) fiction, whose impressive number of pages seem to call out for such innumerable forms of fictional “expansion” (Besson 2015). It would therefore be interesting to study series for young viewers which tend to update either the source text or the very first film or TV adaptations (as was the case with Tyne Tees Television’s new adaptation of the Famous Five by Enid Blyton in 1995-96), to perpetuate the success of a series of novels, or to compete with formerly groundbreaking film adaptations of those very same novels. We might think for example of the 13 books of A Series of Unfortunate Events by American writer Lemony Snicket (1999-2006), who clearly connected his novels with the tradition of the Victorian serial narratives. These novels have been adapted by Netflix and broadcast on its streaming platform since January 2017, after Brad Silberling made a film out of the 23 volumes in 2004. We might also refer to Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy (1995-2000), whose first book only was adapted for the big screen as The Golden Compass (2007), the US version of the book’s title, but whose first television season will be released by BBC1 in 2019. This follows a radio adaptation as well as a stage adaptation in 2003.

If such questions have already been addressed within the larger context of television programmes and series intended for children and teenagers, our aim with this conference is not so much to ponder on childhood and youth culture in general but to focus rather on the adaptation process at work in the shift from book to small screen.

  • What can we infer from this evolution from children’s classics being almost systematically adapted for the cinema to children’s classics being almost systematically adapted for television?
  • Can we say that these series appropriating children’s literature are a mere expansion of a phenomenon that is already characteristic of adult culture? Or should we say that there exists a specific adaptation process when target spectators are young spectators?
  • Does the change of medium contribute to introducing new material in the source narrative?
  • Can the way young viewers watch these series have an influence on the process of adaptation (depending on whether they watch these programmes alone, with their family or with friends, whether they use their mobiles, their computers or a big home screen, and whether they binge-watch the episodes in one night or in a few days, or watch them at various paces)?
  • Do some series try to target a wider and older audience, playing on the nostalgia of adult spectators and the obsession for youth in contemporary anglophone cultures?
  • Are some genres more frequently adapted than others?
  • Do television series testify to the difference made by Anne Besson concerning literature (2004 and 2009) between strictly repetitive “series” (as with The Famous Five) and “cycles” (as with the Harry Potter cycle) whose narratives are framed by the passing of time and the transformation this entails?
  • Is the current predominance of the « cycle » type a consequence of the recent boom of young adult literature?
  • Can we say that sequences of novels tend to be more frequently adapted to the small screen than stand-alone novels?
  • Can watching a series bring some viewers back to the source novel?
  • How can such a remediation of novels result in the densification and complexification of the original fiction world, leading spectators to reinvest and reappraise this original universe through “drilling” (Mittell 2015)?

All these questions, and others, may be addressed in papers focusing on animated or live-action adaptations of children’s and Young Adult novels into anglophone television series. Television series having given rise to novelisations may also be part of the chosen corpus.

Paper proposals (400 words maximum), in French or in English, including an explicit title and a short bio-bibliographical notice, should be sent before 10 May 2019 both to Florence Cabaret ( and to Virginie Douglas (

CFP – Children’s Poetry in Literary Education: Issue of Journal of Literacy Education

Call for Papers for the 2nd issue of the Journal of Literary Education

Very often poetry has been defined as a particular kind of language that does innovative things with words, sound, rhythm and patterns, features that can be a constant source of pleasure but also (and especially for the teachers) of despair. In its strong association with language-play and music, poetry could be found and thoroughly enjoyed in many different forms and manifestations not only in school environments, but also and even more importantly, outside the classroom sphere and beyond the teacher’s influence.

Therefore, it is commonly accepted that poetry can be traced in almost any social environment in human life: a chameleon-like notion that can take many disguises. It appears in all kinds of printed pages and digital media, on the screen and in the street, it takes the form of a song, and so on. It is infused in chants, riddles and lullabies and it can also be transformed into a complex context when it appears concretely combined with pictures.

Children’s poetry, more specifically, has been recently defined as a multimodal art which is “shaped by the dynamics of orality and textuality and by the interplay between them” (2017: 231). Albeit traditionally viewed as a stagnant and conservative genre, with “strong, resilient lines of continuity that runs across the centuries” (Styles, 2012: XIII), it has also become in the last years an innovative genre thanks mainly to the work of some independent publishing houses that are not afraid of taking risks and offer the young readers more challenging books. Thus, as many scholars, critics, or educators have strongly, and in many ways, emphasized children have plenty of opportunities to engage in poetic discourse and creative wordplay, even before their first poetry lesson.

Nevertheless, in classrooms poetry is often treated as a duty and not a pleasure activity, or as a problematic area in school, which causes feelings of disquiet and worry. These feelings can deal with several controversial questions, such as the right interpretation of the poem or the right way of teaching it to students. In Michael Benton’s words (1992:83), poetry has had bad luck in Education.

Nonetheless, poetry for children is nowadays stronger, more varied in its appeal, and more thoroughly studied than it has ever been. There are recent studies (for example, Wakely- Mulroney and Joy, 2018) that offer insightful accounts to the nature and the aesthetics of children’s poetry or its didactic potential.

Considering all this, in what ways LE can help teachers to teach poetry with more confidence and students to encounter it as a rewarding experience? Are there new ways of teaching poetry nowadays? What is the influence of images and the digital cultural on poetic education?

We invite papers related to the overall topic of the issue as described above to be presented. Possible areas for investigation include, but are not restricted to:

  • Children’s poetry and Literary Education
  • Children’s poetry and the oral tradition
  • Children’s poetry as a visual art (multimodality, printed poems, concrete poetry, etc.)
  • The relationship of form and content in poetry: the poem as a “verbal icon”
  • The plurality of poetic form: haiku, tanka, pantoum, limerick, diamante, clerihew, and so on
  • Theories of literature and poetry teaching: from New Criticism to Reader-response
  • Children’s poetry and the young reader: aspects of reading and responding to poems
  • Children and young adults as poets
  • Poetry canon in classrooms
  • Children’s poetry and illustration
  • Poetry picture books: a new way of reading and enjoying poetry?
  • Teaching children’s poetry in school: from manuals to informal spaces
  • Young Adult Poetry and the Internet
  • Empirical studies about poetry and children’s poetry

Submissions are opened all year long for both the Miscellaneous and Monograph section. Papers received before 31 April will be considered for 2019’s issue. Submit your proposals to

Benton, Michael (1992). Secondary Worlds: Literature Teaching and the Visual Arts. Buckingham-Philadelphia: Open UP.
Pullinger, Debbie (2017). From Tongue to Text: A New Reading of Children’s Poetry. London and New York: Bloomsbury.
Styles, M. (2012). “Introduction: Talking the Long View – the State of Children’s Poetry Today.” In M. Styles; L. Joy; D. Whitley. Poetry and Childhood (XI-XVI). Stoke on Trent / Sterling: Trentham Books.
Wakely- Mulroney, Katherine and Joy, Louise (2018).The Aesthetics of Children’s Poetry: A Study of Children’s Verse in English. Oxon and New York: Routledge.

CFP – Narratives of Ageing in the Nineteenth Century

Narratives of Ageing in the Nineteenth Century
University of Lincoln, 23 July 2019
Organisers: Dr Alice Crossley, Dr Amy Culley, and Dr Rebecca Styler

This conference responds to the burgeoning critical interest of humanities scholars in age, ageing, and stages of life from childhood to old age in the nineteenth century.

The figure of the child and the imaginative investment in the idea of childhood are the focus of seminal studies of ageing in this period.

However, recent critical engagements have suggested the value of exploring ageing identities and cultural articulations of age across the life course, in dialogue with one another, and from a variety of disciplinary perspectives.

In light of this development, this conference seeks to address the experiences, conceptions, and representations of the ageing process in the literature and culture of the nineteenth century.

We welcome papers from all humanities disciplines (including, but not restricted to, English, History, Art History, and Religious Studies) and covering a diverse range of media, forms, and genres, such as fiction, poetry, drama, life writing, conduct literature, children’s literature, religious writing, periodicals, portraiture, photography, satirical prints, material culture, medical literature, institutions and their discourses, longevity literature, advertising, elegy.

Topics may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Relationships between stages of the life course: childhood, adolescence, maturity, midlife, old age, longevity, premature ageing, infantilization
  • Ageing and relationships: inter and intra-generational friendship, age heterogamy, familial roles (mothers, fathers, grandparents), sociability
  • Ageing and intersectionality (gender, class, sexuality, race, religion, nation)
  • Developments in critical gerontology, view of the field in relation to C19th studies
  • Ageing and authorship: juvenilia and ‘late style’, age and critical reception
  • Materiality of ageing: souvenirs, tokens, evocative objects
  • Ageing and the body: health, illness, puberty/menopause, sexuality
  • Ageism, gerontophobia, ageing as decline and counter-cultural narratives
  • Ageing as cultural performance, age-consciousness and (dis)identification
  • Nostalgia, recollection, memory
  • Ageing in the light of faith/doubt
  • Ageing and a sense of place: home, travel, institutions, nature, revisiting and returning

We are delighted that a selection of papers from the conference will form the basis of a special issue on ‘Narratives of Ageing in the Nineteenth Century’ for the journal Age, Culture, Humanities to appear in 2021:

Submit a proposal to– Please send proposals of no more than 200 words by 30 April 2019.