10-14 August, 2013
Maastricht, The Netherlands
Convenor: Elisabeth Wesseling
Committee Members: Karin Wenz, Karen Ghonem, Helma van Lierop, Vanessa Joosen, Rose-May Pham Dinh, Roos Wolters, Lidwien Hollanders, Wilma Lieben
Keynote Speakers: Professor Adriana Bus, Universiteit Leiden, The Netherlands; Professor Junko Yokota, National-Louis University, USA; Professor Kerry Mallan, Queensland University of Technology, Australia; Professor Gudrun Marci-Boehncke, Technische Universiteit Dortmund, Germany; Professor Jackie Marsh, University of Sheffield, UK
Sponsors: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, the Dutch Science Foundation (NWO), Stichting Lezen (Dutch Reading Foundation), Municipality of Maastricht, University Foundation Limburg (SWOL)
2013 Congress Sign at Entrance
The 21st IRSCL Congress was held at the Business School Building at Maastricht University in Maastrict, The Netherlands. The Business School Building is a nineteenth-century monastery that has been restructured for teaching purposes. It accommodates spacious lecture halls as well as a large amount of seminar rooms that are equipped with cutting edge ICT facilities for DVD, CD, TV, USB, powerpoint beamers and screens, and internet access. Catering for the conference took place in the Economics Cafeteria, which adjoins a spacious garden. The Congress was convened by Elisabeth Wesseling who was assisted by dedicated scientific and organizing committees.
Maastrict University Business Building
Maastricht Town Hall
Academic and Social Program
This conference aspired towards the following two aims:
I am confident to say we have met all our aims. First of all, in order to facilitate the creation of liaisons between scholars from different fields of expertise and geographical regions, it is imperative that one creates a stimulating social environment which makes delegates feel welcome and at ease, so they can concentrate all of their attention on content and contacts, rather than on practicalities. We have seen to this by:
Lecture by Bart Moeyart at Bookshop Dominicanen
Second, we paid special attention to the nationalities of delegates when we composed the panels, making sure we mixed contributors from diverse geographical backgrounds, thereby also mixing their prospective audiences.
Audience watching keynote presentation by Kerry Mallan
Third, we selected our keynotes in such a way that a good balance between empirical and hermeneutic approaches was achieved, Jackie Marsh and Adriana Bus working within a social science framework, Gudrun Boehncke operating within interdisciplinary literacy paradigms, while Kerry Mallan and Junko Yokota represented text-oriented approaches. None of the keynotes, however, are confined to "their box"; all five are capable of looking beyond and very much aware of alternative approaches to the subject at hand, and capable of reflecting on the pros and cons of different approaches, which is what Adriana Bus and Yunko Yokota did very explicitly in their lectures.
Fourth, we actively acquired and subsequently organized papers in such a way that empirical and hermeneutic approaches were represented in a balanced way throughout the conference.
Gudrun Marci-Boehncke delivering her keynote
Fifth, children's literature studies and media studies mingled quite spontaneously through the strong focus on matters of adaptation and remediation addressed by a great many conference papers. Quite a few delegates did not only discuss how content crosses the borders between media but also between cultures. This was very strong point of the conference, I feel, because the rather cosmopolitan IRSCL provides an ideal forum for this sort of work.
Sixth, we have made a concerted effort to select appropriate moderators, who were knowledgeable about the sessions they chaired. This also makes a difference, we feel, and is well worth spending time on.
Prepared by Elisabeth Wesseling
Opening Remarks of 2013 IRSCL Congress
Keynote by Jackie Marsh - "From the Whip and Top to the Wii: A Historical Analysis of Media, Digital Technologies and Play"
Keynote by Junko Yokota - "What Works Well Where When? How Various Qualities of Digital and Print Picture Books Shape Reader Response"
Keynote by Gudrun Marci-Boehncke - "Children's and Young Adult's Literature in a Digitized World: Cultural and Political Preconditions for Literary Education"
Keynote by Kerry Mallan - "The Lies We Tell: Children's Texts and the Role of (Dis)information in an Age of Security"
Keynote by Adriana Bus - "Electronic Storybooks for three- to six-year-olds: Putting Reading in Jeopardy?"
Closing Remarks of 2013 IRSCL Congress