"Why Comics Are and Are Not Picture Books": MLA Proposed Session (5 March 2011; 5-8 Jan. 2012)

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A Joint Proposal by the MLA Children's Literature Division and the MLA Comics and Graphic Narratives Discussion Group

This panel will explore the possible relationships between comics and picture books, two imagetext genres implicated in children's literacy learning which, despite overlapping formally and aesthetically, nonetheless stand apart socially and culturally. The potential application of picture book theory to comics, and, conversely, comics theory to picture books, promises to challenge this apartness—that is, to call into question the generic distinctiveness of the two forms. In that spirit, this panel invites participation from multiple perspectives, including but not limited to genre theory, education, history, formalism, aesthetics, semiotics, and ideological criticism. Please send 500-word abstracts by 5 March 2011 to Charles Hatfield: charles.hatfield@gmail.com