This week's Modern Language Association (MLA) convention, to be held online January 7-11, will, as usual, feature panels and papers related to comics studies and to children's literature and culture studies. It's a giant conference, with comics and children's culture scholars making up only a small (though vital!) part of the proceedings. I'll miss attending it in person this year, as Mich and I did last year in Seattle, but it's good to see that the MLA has arranged a big, ambitious virtual alternative!
On New Year's Day, my colleague Phil Nel posted his annual blog entry listing all of this year's MLA programming related to comics, children's texts, and childhood studies. The list is a great resource, a kind of navigational aid to accompany the MLA's enormous program; check it out:
There's a wealth of very promising work on offer this year. So many names leap out at me (such as Brigitte Fielder, Margaret Galvan, Rachel Kunert-Graf, Rachel Miller, Anna Peppard, Alex Ponomareff, Jan Susina, Gwen Athene Tarbox, Erin Williams, and Daniel Worden), and I'm sure there will be informative and inspiring work by many scholars whose work I haven't gotten to know yet!
I'm particularly excited about Comics and Graphic Narratives for Young Audiences, a special panel on Saturday, Jan. 9, co-sponsored by the Forum on Comics and Graphic Narratives and the Forum on Children's and Young Adult Literature, to be chaired by Phil and our colleague, Aaron Kashtan. It's always exciting to see those two communities working together!
As I said in my previous post, these are exciting times in comics studies!
PS. Thanks, as ever, to Phil Nel for the info and inspiration!