CFP: MLA 2016 CHLA-Sponsored, Guaranteed Panel: "The Afterlife of Popular Children's Culture Icons"

full name / name of organization: 
Children's Literature Association
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Throughout the 20th century, the role of the author has played a crucial role in Western culture's understanding of children's media. Children learn from a very early age to associate well-loved fictional characters with individual author-figures, and names like Dr. Seuss and Walt Disney accordingly become inextricably linked with iconic characters like The Grinch and Mickey Mouse. What happens, however, when those characters continue to appear in new stories after their creators die? How does the absence of that signature author figure impact the audience's relationship with those characters? Papers in this panel for the 2016 MLA Convention in Austin, Texas are invited to address these questions. The panel focuses on key instances in which heirs, estates, or other parties have attempted to continue developing material for iconic children's characters after their signature authors have passed away. Presentations may cover a wide range of mediums, including prose fiction, film, television, comic strips, and other popular avenues for children's culture. Ideal submissions, however, will demonstrate potential new means of understanding the larger culture's fundamental relationship with these authors and their iconic characters.

This is a guaranteed panel, sponsored by The Children's Literature Association. Send 250 word abstracts and brief CV by 1 March 2015 to Paul Cote (pcote@umd.edu). The 2016 MLA Convention will take place in Austin, Texas from January 7-January 10.