In With the New But Not Out With the Old: Balancing Tradition and Innovation in Children's Literature - SAMLA 2014 - Nov. 7-9

full name / name of organization: 
Rachel Rickard
contact email: 

Because the study of children's literature is not rooted in one time period, culture or medium, it is a continuously evolving field. New books, movies, video games, magazines, comics, and websites for children are produced every year, and, because of this constant creation, we study classic literature like Alice in Wonderland alongside brand new children's films like Frozen. In looking at this widening range of texts, though, it becomes clear that while some aspects of children's texts have persisted others have changed (and are changing) rapidly. This panel seeks to explore how contemporary children's literature balances old and new. Papers may explore the ways in which contemporary children's texts preserve tradition (whether that tradition comes from medium or content) while simultaneously breaking with tradition and creating new and innovative forms, genres, and stories. Suggested paper topics include but are not limited to:
• Adaptation and the reworking of old stories in new ways
• New categories of "children's" literature such as New Adult and Tween
• Multigenre and multimodal children's texts as well as children's texts that cross and blur genre lines
• Intertextuality and how contemporary children's literature calls back to more traditional children's literature
• Discussions of what makes a particular work, form, character, or genre of children's literature sustainable across time

Please submit a 250-300 word abstract by June 10, 2014 to Rachel Rickard at