School Fantasy / École et Fantasy

deadline for submissions: 
March 30, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
Fantasy Art and Studies (association les Têtes Imaginaires)

From the famous castle of Hogwarts to Sunnydale high school and the magical academy of Aretuza, Fantasy stories are frequently set in school settings, especially when they are addressed to young readers and viewers. These familiar and possibly reassuring surroundings can hide important mysteries, including secret and magical passages or vampire-teachers, thus creating either worry or wonder.

Even if the teaching relationship can be restricted to one-on-one situations between teacher and student, like in T. H. White’s The Sword in the Stone and Mistress Masham’s Repose, most Fantasy stories seem to favour group situations when it comes to education. These can thus appear closer to the reader’s own reality – with a magical twist –, as is the case in the Harry Potter saga written by J. K. Rowling, and in one of its inspirations, Jill Murphy’s The Worst Witch. The presence of several students usually allows for numerous plot developments, giving the story a more dynamic pace. Beside these successful series in which the characters barely leave the school grounds, one could list ad infinitum Fantasy stories taking place in a school, or in which education is the main theme: A Wizard of Earthsea, The Magicians, The School for Good and Evil, Umbrella Academy, Spellwright, The Shadow of What Was Lost, Novice Dragoneer, A Deadly Education, etc.

Why is the Fantasy genre fascinated by schools? Is it merely a way to reckon on the proximity of the young reader’s daily life? Or does Fantasy see in school settings a way to reenchant the world, one lesson at a time? The 13th issue of the bilingual journal Fantasy Art and Studies plans on studying this close link between Fantasy and school. It will also take into consideration other teaching spaces, including preschool, middle school, high school, university, etc.

This issue will also look for studies of the way Fantasy stories are taught in school, and the potential discrepancies in their integration in curricula between different countries.

Paper proposals could focus on, without being limited to:

  • the representation of school settings in Fantasy stories and its evolution;
  • themes, characters and issues directly associated with school Fantasy;
  • the educational purpose of Fantasy stories;
  • the representation of schools in Fantasy stories from different cultures and countries;
  • the way Fantasy is taught in school and its evolution;
  • etc.

Paper proposals of approximately 2.000 signs, written in English or French, will be accompanied by a short biobibliography and sent in .doc or .docx format by 30 March 2022, to

The complete papers will not exceed 30.000 signs (space and endnotes included). They will be written in English or French, and sent in .doc format, Times New Roman 12pts, single-line spacing, by 1 July 2022.

Please read our submission guidelines before forwarding your paper:


Informative bibliography

Besson Anne (dir.), Dictionnaire de la fantasy, Paris, Vendémiaire, 2018.

Bougon Marie-Lucie, Breton Justine et Timoner Amelha (dir.), Fantasy et enfance, Cahiers Robinson n°49, 2021.

Cani Isabelle, Harry Potter ou l’anti-Peter Pan : Pour en finir avec la magie de l’enfance, Paris, Fayard, 2007.

Klingberg Göte, The Fantastic Tale for Children: A Genre Study from the Viewpoint of Literary and Educational Research, Gothenburg, Gothenburg School of Education, 1970.

Lochhead Marion, The Renaissance of Wonder in Children’s Literature, Edinburgh, Canongate, 1977.