Article Award

The ChLA Article Award is given annually by the Children's Literature Association to recognize outstanding articles of literary criticism published in English on the topic of children's literature within a given year.

Submission Deadline:

August 15, 2024

Submission Link

Submission Guidelines:

  • Nominations should be submitted online through the website.

  • Eligible articles must be written in English exclusively by the author(s) or translator(s) whose name(s) appear(s) on the article and must have been published two years prior. (Example: Articles awarded in 2024 would be published in 2022)

  • Articles should provide new insights into the field, making a distinct or significant scholarly contribution to the understanding of children's literature. 

  • Reprints of previously published articles are not eligible.

Past Article Award Winners:

2023 awards
Winner: Derritt Mason for "The Virtual Child, or Six Provocations on Children’s Literature and (Pre-) Digital Culture," published in The Lion and the Unicorn

Honor Article: Gabriel Duckels for "Melodrama and the Memory of AIDS in American Queer Young Adult Literature," published in Children's Literature Association Quarterly

Honor Article: Lisa Chu Shen for “Femininity, Homoeroticism and Heterosexuality in Yin Jianling’s Female Coming-of-Age Narratives,” published in Children’s Literature in Education

2021 awards
Winner: Karen Coats for “Visual Conceptual Metaphors in Picturebooks: Implications for Social Justice,” published in Children's Literature Association Quarterly

Honor Article: Michelle Abate for “Out of the Past: Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, the AIDS Crisis, and Queer Retrosity,” published in Research on Diversity in Youth Literature.

2020 awards
Winner: Gretchen Papazian for “Color Multiculturally: Twenty-First-Century Multicultural Picturebooks, Color(ing) Beyond the Lines,”, Children's Literature Association Quarterly

Honor Article: Sean Conners and Roberta Trites for "Legend, exceptionalism, and genocidal logic: A framework for reading neoliberalism in YA dystopias," published in The ALAN Review

2019 awards
Winner: Brigitte Fielder for “Black Girls, White Girls, American Girls: Slavery and Racialized Perspectives in Abolitionist and Neoabolitionist Children’s Literature”, TSWL: Tulsa Studies in Women’s Literature 36.2 (Fall 2017).

Honor Article: Amanda Greenwell for “Jesse Jackson’s Call Me Charley: Protesting Segregated Recreation in Cold War America.”, Children’s Literature, vol. 45 (2017): pp. 92-113

Honor Article: Ashley Hope Pérez and Patricia Enciso for “Decentering Whiteness and Monolingualism in the Reception of Latinx YA Literature.”, The Billingual Review/La Revista Bilingüe, vol. 33, no. 5, (May 2017): pp. 1-14

2018 awards
Winner: Amanda K. Allen for “Dear Miss Daly': 1940s Fan Letters to Maureen Daly and the Age-Grading and Gendering of Seventeenth Summer,” Children’s Literature Association Quarterly 41.1 (2016).

Honor Article: Ebony Thomas, Debbie Reese and Kathleen Horning for “Much Ado About a Fine Dessert: The Cultural Politics of Representing Slavery in Children's Literature”, Journal of Children’s Literature 42(2) (2016): 7-17.

2017 awards
Winner: Joe Sutliff Sanders for “Almost Astronauts and the Pursuit of Reliability in Children’s Nonfiction,” Children’s Literature in Education 46.4 (2015): 378–393.

Honor Article: Victoria Ford Smith for “Art Critics in the Cradle: Fin de Siecle Painting Books and the Move to Modernism,” Children’s Literature 43 (2015): 161–181.

2016 awards

2015 awards

2014 awards 
Winner: Lisa Rowe Fraustino for "Rights and Wrongs of Anthropomorphism in Picture Books," Ethics and Children's Literature (2014): 145–162.

Honor Article: Daniel Feldman for "Reading Games in Auschwitz: Play in Holocaust Youth Literature," The Lion and the Unicorn 38.3 (September 2014): 360–380.

Honor Article: Catherine Tosenberger for "Mature Poets Steal: Children's Literature and the Unpublishability of Fanfiction," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 39.1 (Spring 2014): 4–27.

2013 awards
Winner: Zetta Elliott for "The Trouble with Magic: Conjuring the Past in New York City Parks," Jeunesse 5.2 (Winter 2013): 17–39.

Honor Article: Rachel Conrad for "'We Are Masters at Childhood': Time and Agency in Poetry by, for, and about Children," Jeunesse 5.2 (Winter 2013): 124–150.

Honor Article: Marah Gubar, Robin Bernstein, Karin E. Westman, and Sara L. Schwebel for "Forum: Manifestos from the 2013 Children's Literature Association Conference," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 38.4 (Winter 2013): 449–475.

2012 awards 
Winner: Eric Tribunella for “Between Boys: Edward Stevenson’s Left to Themselves (1891) and the Birth of Gay Children’s Literature,” Children's Literature Association Quarterly 37.4 (Winter 2012): 374–388.

Honor Article: Mike Cadden for “All is Well: the Epilogue in Children’s Fantasy Fiction,” Narrative 20.3 (October 2012): 343–356.

2011 awards
Winner: Richard Gooding for “Clockwork:  Philip Pullman’s Posthuman Fairy Tale,” Children’s Literature in Education 42.4 (November 2011): 308–324.

Honor Article: Xu Xu  for "‘Chairman Mao's Child’: Sparkling Red Star and the Construction of Children in the Chinese Cultural Revolution” Children's Literature Association Quarterly 36.4 (Winter 2011): 381–409.

2010 awards
Winner: David Rudd for "Children's Literature and the Return to Rose," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 35.3 (Fall 2010): 290–310.

Honor Article: Zaman Chowdhury for “Dreams do Come True in New Orleans: American Fairy Tales, Post-Katrina New Orleans, and Disney's The Princess and the Frog (2009),” Papers: Explorations into Children's Literature 20.2 (2010): 25–40.

2009 awards
Winner: Rose Lovell-Smith for “Peter, Potter, Rabbits, Robbers,” Papers: Explorations into Children’s Literature 19.1 (2009): 17–29.

Honor Article: Brian Attebery for “Elizabeth Enright and the Family Story as Genre,” Children’s Literature 37 (2009): 114–36.

2008 awards
Winner: Jackie Stallcup for “‘The Feast of Misrule’: Captain Underpants, Satire, and the Literary Establishment,” Genre XLI (2008): 171–202.
Honor Article: Joe Sutliff Sanders for “Spinning Sympathy: Orphan Girl Novels and the Sentimental Tradition,” Children’s Literature Association Quarterly 33.2 (2008): 41–61.

2007 awards
Winner: Jackie Horne for “The Power of Public Opinion: Constructing Class in Agnes Strickland's The Rival Crusoes,” Children’s Literature 35 (2007): 1–26.

Honor Article: Kenneth Kidd for “Prizing Children's Literature: The Case of Newbery Gold,” Children’s Literature 35 (2007): 166–190.

2006 awards
Winner: Hugh McElaney for “Alcott’s Freaking of Boyhood: The Perplex of Gender and Disability in Under the Lilacs,Children’s Literature 34 (2006): 139–160.

Honor Article: Susan Honeyman for “Manufactured Agency and the Playthings Who Dream It for Us,” Children’s Literature Association Quarterly 31.2 (Summer 2006): 109–131.

2005 awards
Winner: Shelley King for "'All Wound Up': Pullman 's Marvelous/Uncanny Clockwork," Children's Literature 33 (2005): 66–93.

Honor Article: Elizabeth Parsons for "The Appeal of the Underdog: Mr. Lunch and Left Politics as Entertainment," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 30.4 (2005): 354–67.

2004 awards
Winner: Nathalie op de Beeck for "'The First Picture Book for Modern Children': Mary Liddell's Little Machinery and the Fairy Tale of Modernity," Children's Literature 32 (2004): 41–83.

Honor Article: Eric L. Tribunella for "A Boy and His Dog: Canine Companions and the Proto-Erotics of Youth," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 29.3 (Fall 2004): 152–71.

2003 awards
Winner: Marah Gubar for "Species Trouble: The Abjection of Adolescence in E. B. White's Stuart Little," The Lion and the Unicorn 27.1 (January 2003): 98–119.

Honor Article: David Gooderham for "Fantasizing It As It Is: Religious Language in Philip Pullman's Trilogy, His Dark Materials," Children's Literature 31 (2003): 155–175.

2002 awards
Winner: Jackie Stallcup for "Power, Fear, and Children's Books," Children's Literature 30 (2002): 125–158.

Honor Article: Sharon Smulders for "`The Only Good Indian': History, Race, and Representation in Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House on the Prairie," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 27.4 (2002): 191–202.

Honor Article: Anita Tarr for "The Absence of Moral Agency in Robert Cormier's The Chocolate War," Children's Literature 30 (2002): 96–124.

2001 awards
Winner: Claudia Nelson for "Drying the Orphan's Tear: Changing Representations of the Dependent Child, 1870-1930," Children's Literature 29 (2001): 52–70.

Honor Article: Charles Butler for "Alan Garner's Red Shift and the Shifting Ballad of 'Tam Lin'," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 26.2 (Summer 2001): 74– 83.

Honor Article: Teya Rosenberg for "Magical Realism and Children's Literature: Diana Wynne Jones's Black Maria and Salman Rushdie's Midnight's Children as a Test Case," Papers 11.1 (September 2001): 14–25.

2000 awards
Winner: Kenneth Kidd for "Boyology in the Twentieth Century," Children's Literature 28 (2000): 44–72.

Honor Article: Karen Coats for "P is for Patriarchy: Re-Imaging the Alphabet," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 25.2 (Summer 2000) 88–97.

1999 awards
Winner: Philip Nel, "Dada Knows Best: Growing up 'Surreal' with Dr. Seuss," Children's Literature 27 (1999): 150–184.

Honor article: Katharine Capshaw Smith, "Constructing a Shared History: Black Pageantry for Children's During the Harlem Renaissance," Children's Literature 27 (1999): 40–63.

1998 awards
Winner: Gillian Adams, "Medieval Children's Literature: Its Possibility and Actuality," Children's Literature 26 (1998): 1–24.

Honor article: Naomi J. Wood, "Gold Standards and Silver Subversions: Treasure Island and the Romance of Money," Children's Literature 26 (1998): 61–85.

1997 awards
Winner: U. C. Knoepflmacher, "Kipling's `Just-So' Partner: The Dead Child as Collaborator and Muse," Children's Literature 25 (1997): 24–49.

Honor article: M. Daphne Kutzer, "A Wilderness Inside: Domestic Space in the Work of Beatrix Potter," The Lion and the Unicorn 21 (Spring 1997): 204–14.

1996 awards
Winner: Frances Armstrong, "The Dollhouse as Ludic Space 1690-1920," Children's Literature 24 (1996): 23–54.

Honor article: M. David Westbrook, "Readers of Oz: Young and Old, Old and New Historicist," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 21.3 (1996): 111–19.

1995 awards
Winner: Hamida Bosmajian, "Memory and Desire in the Landscapes of Sendak's Dear Mili," The Lion and the Unicorn 19.2 (Dec. 1995): 186–210.

Honor article: Beverly Lyon Clark, "Domesticating the School Story, Regendering a Genre: Alcott's Little Men," New Literary History 26.2 (1995): 323–42.

1994 awards
Winner: Phyllis Bixler, "The Secret Garden `Misread': The Broadway Musical as Creative Interpretation," Children's Literature 22 (1994): 101–23.Children's Literature in Education 25.1 (March 1994): 29–40.

Honor article: Judith Plotz, "Secret Garden II; or, Lady Chatterley's Lover as Palimpsest," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 19.1 (Spring 1994): 15–19.

Honorable mention: Claudia Nelson, "Fantasies de Sicle: Sex and Sexuality in the Late-Victorian Fairy Tale," Transforming Genres: New Approaches to British Fiction of the 1890s. Ed. Nikki Lee Manos and Meri-Jane Rochelson. New York: St. Martin's, 1994. 87–107.
Honorable Mention: Karla Walters, "Seeking Home: Secularizing the Quest for the Celestial City in Little Women and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz," Reform and Counterreform: Dialectics of the Word in Western Christianity Since Luther. Ed. John C. Hawley. New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 1994. 153–71.

1993 awards
Winner: Jerry Phillips, "The Mem Sahib, the Worthy, the Rajah, and His Minions: Some Reflections on the Class Politics of The Secret Garden," The Lion and the Unicorn 17.2 (1993): 168–94.

Honor article: Glenn Handler, "Tom Sawyer's Masculinity," Arizona Quarterly 49.4 (Winter 1993): 33–59.

Honorable mention: Valerie Krips, "Mistaken Identity: Russell Hoban's Mouse and His Child," Children's Literature 21 (1993): 92–100.

Honorable mention: Roberta Seelinger Trites, "Nesting: Embedded Narratives as Maternal Discourse in Children's Novels," Children's Literature Association Quarterly 18.4 (Winter 1993-94): 165–70.

1992 awards
Winner: Margaret Higonnet, "Civility Books, Child Citizens and Uncivil Antics," Poetics Today 13.1 (Spring 1992): 123–40.

Honor article: U. C. Knoepflmacher, "Female Power and Male Self-Assertion: Kipling and the Maternal," Children's Literature 20 (1992): 15–35.

Honorable mention: Judith A. Plotz, "The Empire of Youth: Crossing and Double-Crossing Cultural Barriers in Kipling's Kim," Children's Literature 20 (1992): 111–31.

1991 awards
Winner: William Moebius, "Room with a View: Bedroom Scenes in Picture Books," Children's Literature 19 (1991): 53–74.

Honor article: Mitzi Myers, "Romancing the Moral Tale: Maria Edgeworth and the Problematics of Pedagogy," Romanticism and Children's Literature in Nineteenth-Century England. Ed. James Holt McGavran, Jr. Athens: U of Georgia P, 1991. 96–128.

1990 awards
Winner: Jean Perrot, "Maurice Sendak's Ritual Cooking of the Child in Three Tableaux: The Moon, Mother, Music," Children's Literature 18 (1990): 68–86.

Honor article: Leona Fisher, "Mystical Fantasy for Children: Silence and Community," The Lion and the Unicorn 14.2 (Dec. 1990): 37–56.

1989 awards
Winner: Richard Wilbur, "The Persistence of Riddles," The Yale Review 78.3 (Dec. 1989): 333–51.

Honor article: Angela M. Estes and Kathleen M. Lant, "Dismembering the Text: The Horror of Louisa May Alcott's Little Women," Children's Literature 17 (1989): 98–123.

Honorable mention: Claudia Nelson, "Sex and the Single Boy: Ideals of Manliness and Sexuality in Victorian Literature for Boys," Victorian Studies 32.4 (Summer 1989): 525–50.

1988 awards
Winner: Peter Hollindale, "Ideology and the Children's Book," Signal 55 (Jan. 1988): 1–22.

Honor article: Linda M. Shires, "Fantasy, Nonsense, Parody, and the Status of the Real: The Example of Carroll," Victorian Poetry 26.3 (Fall 1988): 267–83.

1987 awards
Winner: Margaret R. Higonnet, "Narrative Fractures and Fragments," Children's Literature 15 (1987): 37–54.

Honor article: Lissa Paul, "Enigma Variations: What Feminist Theory Knows about Children's Literature," Signal 54 (Sept. 1987): 186–202.

1986 awards
Winner: Mitzi Myers, "Impeccable Governesses, Rational Dames, and Moral Mothers: Mary Wollstonecraft and the Female Tradition in Georgian Children's Books," Children's Literature 14 (1986): 31–59.

Honor article: Geraldine DeLuca, "Lives and Half-Lives: Biographies of Women for Young Adults," Children's Literature in Education 17 (Winter 1986): 241–52.

Honor article: M. Sarah Smedman, "Out of the Depths to Joy: Spirit/Soul in Juvenile Novels," Triumphs of the Human Spirit in Children's Literature. Ed. Francelia Butler and Richard Rotert. Hamden, CT: Library Professional Publications, 1986. 181–97.

1985 award
Winner: Hamida Bosmajian, "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Other Excremental Visions," The Lion and the Unicorn 9 (1985): 36–49.

1984 award
Winner: Jerome Griswold, "Hans Brinker: Sunny World, Angry Waters," Children's Literature 12 (1984): 47–60.

1983 award
Winner: U. C. Knoepflmacher, "The Balancing of Child and Adult," Nineteenth Century Fiction 37.4 (March 1983): 497–530.

1982 award
Winner: Anita Moss, "The Spear and the Piccolo: Heroic Dimensions of William Steig's Dominic and Abel's Island," Children's Literature 10 (1982): 124–40.

1981 award - no award given

1980 award
Winner: Lynn Rosenthal, "The Development of Consciousness in Lucy Boston's The Children of Green Knowe," Children's Literature 8 (1980): 53–67.

1979 award
Winner: Phyllis Bixler, "Tradition and the Individual Talent of Frances Hodgson Burnett," Children's Literature 7 (1979): 191–207.

1978 award
Winner: Leonard Clark, "Poetry and Children," Children's Literature in Education 9 (Autumn 1978).

1977 award
Winner: Aidan Chambers, "The Reader in the Book," Signal 23 (May 1977).