Call for Papers: 2019 ChLA Diversity Committee’s Annual Sponsored Panel on “Intersectional Approaches to Activism and Social Equity in Children’s and Young Adult Literature”

Call for Papers: 2019 ChLA Diversity Committee’s Annual Sponsored Panel

Children’s Literature Association Conference

June 13-15, 2019

Indianapolis, Indiana

Intersectional Approaches to Activism and Social Equity in Children’s and Young Adult Literature

To what extent can children’s and young adult literature push readers to acknowledge and advocate for more democratic and egalitarian ways of existing in the world? Do these literatures reflect various, overlapping forms of oppression, and do they consider intersecting domains of identity including (but not limited to) gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, ability, and class? What voices are included or excluded in this call for advocacy and acknowledgement?

ChLA’s Diversity Committee welcomes paper proposals that focus on intersectional approaches to activism and social equity in children’s and young adult literature. Pioneering scholars such as Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw have argued that people and bodies suffer multiple and simultaneous forms of discrimination—these forms of discrimination converge, leading to different, visceral expressions and experiences of oppression. An intersectional approach to oppression and identity therefore takes into consideration the “combined effects of practices which discriminate on the basis of race, and on the basis of sex” and other domains of identity.[1] We are interested in papers that rigorously examine texts that: a) promote and foster different forms of empathy, collectivity, and political engagement; and b) that provide a rich, complex, intersectional approach towards identity and oppression that considers multiple forms of experience and being. We expect papers in this panel to highlight the groundbreaking work that is being accomplished by both traditional/cutting-edge texts and expose areas where this literature needs improvement. Furthermore, we hope that panelists will explore the aesthetic, narrative, visual, poetic, and/or literary techniques that texts implement when representing activism and social equity through an intersectional lens.

For questions or queries, please contact Angel Daniel Matos ( or Lara Saguisag ( Email a 350-500-word abstract and a 2-page abbreviated CV to Angel by September 15, 2018. Notification of the selected proposals will take place by October 1, 2018. Scholars whose proposals are not selected will be able to resubmit their abstracts to ChLA’s general Call for Papers (deadline is October 15, 2018).


[1] Kimberlé Crenshaw, “Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex: A Black Feminist Critique of Antidiscrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory and Antiracist Politics,” University of Chicago Legal Forum: Vol. 1989: Iss. 1, Article 8: 149.


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