CFP: [Cultural-Historical] Place and Space in Children's Literature Conference

full name / name of organization: 
Maria Cecire
contact email: 

Place and Space in Children's Literature
27-28 March 2009, University of Oxford
Keble College, Oxford

Keynote speech by Philip Pullman

The University of Oxford Children’s Literature and Youth Culture Colloquium invites papers on
the themes of place and space in children’s literature for its conference to be held at Keble
College, Oxford. The keynote speech, opening reception, and delegates’ dinner on the evening of
Friday 27 March will be followed by a day of panels and discussions on Saturday 28 March, 2009.

Confirmed speakers include Peter Hunt, Farah Mendlesohn, Margaret Kean, and Diane Purkiss.

Space is fundamental in any exercise of power.
--Michel Foucault

>From the Prince Edward Island of Anne of Green Gables to Gossip Girl’s glamorous Upper East
Side to the multiple Oxfords in His Dark Materials, the locales of children’s and young adult
literature often aid in defining the child’s relationship to his or her world and delineating the
terms and possibilities of youth. More abstract concepts of proximity, size, positioning, and
enclosure likewise contribute to the construction of the child and the world in which s/he exists.
This conference aims to address these issues through a day of papers by established and rising
academics in the field of children’s literature studies. As such, the Oxford Children’s Literature
and Youth Studies Colloquium solicits a wide range of submissions that explore how
metaphorical and physical space create landscapes of power, knowledge, and identity in texts
aimed at youth audiences.

Appropriate to its theme, this conference will be held in Oxford, a location that has special
importance for children’s literature as the home and/or university of such notable children’s
authors as Lewis Carroll, Kenneth Grahame, C.S. Lewis, Diana Wynne Jones, Richard Adams,
Susan Cooper, Alan Garner, and Kevin Crossley-Holland, among many others. It features as the
setting in works by Penelope Lively, Philip Pullman, Matthew Skelton and more, and has served as
a primary shooting location for the film adaptations of the Harry Potter novels and The Golden

Please email your 250-word abstract with your name and institutional affiliation to the University
of Oxford Children’s Literature and Youth Studies Colloquium at oxchildrensli[at]gmail[dot]com
by December 1, 2008.

For registration and more information, see

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Received on Wed Oct 08 2008 - 05:35:30 EDT