ChLA Conferences

Annually, the Children’s Literature Association holds an academic conference that focuses on the scholarly study of children’s and adolescent literature. Conference organizers and participants value multiculturalism, diversity, and inclusivity. Conference sessions include (but are not limited to) theoretical approaches, author studies, historical approaches, and archival and bibliographic studies; papers range in topics that include picture books, children’s novels, young adult (YA) literature, children’s poetry and drama, series fiction, graphic narratives, children’s periodicals, nonfiction, film, television, and new media. Some sessions also deal with the college-level pedagogy of children’s and adolescent literature and professional issues in the field, including an “Editors’ Roundtable” at which various journal editors offer advice for publishing in scholarly journals. Keynote speakers may be established scholars in the field and/or those who write for children. A “New Members” reception typically welcomes new members, and the conference concludes with a banquet and award ceremony. Sometimes referred to by the members as the “heart and soul” of the organization’s activities, the conference brings together a broad range of scholars committed to the study of children’s and adolescent literature. The conference is typically held in June and is sponsored annually by a different academic institution or regionally connected group of institutions.