CFP: Representations of Childhood in Comics

Alon Lischinsky alischinsky at
Wed Oct 2 08:19:33 UTC 2013

(With apologies for cross-posting)

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CFP: Representations of Childhood in Comics

Childhood is now widely recognized as a social construct (Fass, Jenks,
Mintz). As the artifice behind the construction of childhood has been
revealed, there has been a marked increase in the analysis of children
and childhood in contemporary culture (Demarr and Bakermann, Edelman,
Latham, McLennan, Renner, Stockton). Despite the increase in scholarly
attention, depictions of childhood in comics and other forms of comic
art are ripe for further study. The forthcoming issue of the Journal
of Graphic Novels and Comics, focusing on comics, picturebooks, and
childhood, should provide interesting insights into these depictions.
Yet there remains plenty of room for consideration regarding how
different comics construct childhood. This is an especially
interesting area of inquiry given the somewhat vexed association comic
books have traditionally maintained with childhood. In an attempt to
continue developing the scholarly focus on childhood, as well as
comics, we seek proposals for scholarly articles that analyze, explore
and interrogate depictions of childhood in comics or comic art for
inclusion in a book-length anthology.

Potential topics include:

What do comics teach us about current constructions of childhood?

How do comics resist or undermine contemporary constructions of childhood?

How can comics help us better understand the role of children in a
given societal context?

How do comics shed light on the relationship between children and
adults? Between adults and their own childhood?

How can depictions of childhood be understood as metaphors for
specific cultural phenomena, values, disruptions or evolutions?

What anxieties regarding culture, politics, education, etc. do comics reveal?

How have ideas regarding childhood affected comics?

Please submit an abstract of 300 words and a short CV to Mark
Heimermann and Brittany Tullis at heimermanntullis at by
January 1st, 2014 for consideration. Full papers will be due by June
1st, 2014.
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