ABOUT THE JOURNAL
The Journal of Children's Literature is a refereed journal devoted to teaching and scholarship for the field of children's literature. It is the product of the Children's Literature Assembly of NCTE and is published twice annually.
To join CLA and subscribe to the Journal of Children's Literature, visit our Membership Page or click on the membership links below.
The Journal of Children’s Literature, a refereed publication of the Children’s Literature Assembly of the National Council of Teachers of English, explores issues of current concern to scholars in the field of children’s literature, librarians, and classroom teachers—preschool through middle school.
As a peer-reviewed professional publication, the Journal of Children’s Literature features research-based and scholarly articles that explore contemporary issues that are of interest to elementary and middle grade teachers, scholars and researchers of children’s literature, teacher educators, and librarians. It also recognizes the diversity of methodologies and theories and seeks critical perspectives on issues related to race/ethnicity, class, gender, sexuality, dis/ability, language and other similar topics in children’s literature
We value the unique position JCL occupies in the field, bridging theory and practice by publishing research-based and theoretical manuscripts that have immediate implications for the ways in which children’s literature is shared in elementary and middle grade classrooms, and discussed in communities outside the classroom.
With the November 2015 approval of NCTE’s “Resolution on the Need for Diverse Children’s and Young Adult Books, JCL is committed to the recognition of diverse voices, the support of emerging IBPOC scholars and researchers, and to excellence in interdisciplinary research and scholarship in the field of children’s literature. We therefore welcome submissions that center literature studies in relation to issues of social justice, and equity, the representations of populations that have been historically marginalized or under-represented in children’s texts and culture, as well as the intersections between popular culture and identity.
We are professors of education, literacy, and children’s and young adult literature whose professional work centers on issues of social justice, the representations of populations that have been historically marginalized or under-represented in children’s texts and culture, and the intersection between popular culture and identity. Our work is grounded in theories of reader response, critical multiculturalism, and culturally responsive and sustaining pedagogies, and is informed by research and scholarship in education, literary and cultural studies.
Fall 2020 (Due January 15, 2020)
A focus on #OwnVoices
On September 6, 2015, author Corinne Duyvis suggested on Twitter the use of #ownvoices to “recommend kidlit about diverse characters written by authors from that same diverse group” (@corinneduyvis, 2015). Since then, #OwnVoices has become a movement in the field of children’s literature, influencing how many teachers, librarians, and readers select books and how some publishers solicit manuscripts from prospective authors and illustrators. #OwnVoices builds upon professional conversations that have been ongoing in the field of children’s literature for several decades, including debates about author identity and who has the “right” to tell which stories. In this special issue, we invite theoretical, literature-based, and research articles that explore the complexities of #OwnVoices. Potential topics include the following:
Spring 2021 (Due: August 15, 2020)
A focus on critical multiculturalism and children’s literature
Within the past couple of decades, Critical Multicultural Analysis has emerged as a preferred theoretical framework through which researchers in education often analyze children’s texts for issues of authenticity, accuracy, and mis/representations. This framework enables readers to read purposefully and critically in order to further identify how power issues manifest in literary texts regardless of whether the books are written by insiders or outsiders. Additionally, it allows readers to situate their readings within socio-historical contexts that might also account for the way groups are depicted in children’s books. Readers might then actively engage in addressing the issues noted in their analyses in the larger service of social justice. Join us in this issue as we explore how representations continue to evolve in children’s literature in the 21st century. Some of the questions that might be explored in response to this call might include: In what ways is children’s literature representative of our local and/or global diversity? What practices prepare future teachers with the knowledge and strategies they will need to guide children’s engagement with the children’s literature of the 21st century that reflects our global diversity?” We invite contributors to submit articles on how cultural groups continue to be represented in children’s literature in a power continuum; and/or how they discuss issues of representations prevalent in the classroom.
Fall 2021 (Due: January 15, 2021)
A focus on transnational experiences in children’s literature
This issue is an opportunity to feature needed counter-narratives in children’s literature and classrooms that highlight the unique experiences and resilience of transmigrant communities and families and how their lives are often shaped by complex social networks and negotiations that transcend national borders, cultures, languages, genders, and social groups. As Brochin & Medina have noted (2017), over the past decade, we have seen an emergence of transnational texts in contemporary children’s literature that depict the complex social networks and lived realities of communities who live in between and across nations, states, and borders—including physical, cultural, linguistic, and gendered spaces.
Transnational literature for children makes visible the complex dynamics and consequences of transnationalism in diverse communities in the US and across the US borders, and challenges conceptions of a linear path of migration while centering global politics of power. Per Brochin & Medina, a transnational perspective on the study of children’s literature does note simply map how people and texts move but aims to understand the new forms of marginalization, unfair redistribution of wealth, and re-segregation that emerge specifically for transmigrant communities. In response, we invite contributors to submit articles that explore nuanced portrayals of transnationalism in children’s literature; and/or how teachers and students are responding to the social, political, and linguistic border-crossing narratives in children’s literature that position them as readers across time and space.
Spring 2022 (Due: August 15, 2021)
A focus on children’s literature and critical literacy.
Children’s literature provides readers with opportunities to problematize issues, promote reflection, transform new understandings and take action. With the ever-changing nature of the political and educational landscape, classroom spaces become sites to critically explore the world. Through rich engagements with literature and media surrounding social issues, teachers and students enter critical conversations. In this column, we welcome manuscripts that demonstrate critical literacy at work both in classroom and public settings. Some of the questions that might be explored in response to this call might include: In what ways do teachers leverage students’ constructs of their world as they enact critical literacy? How do multimodal text set sets focused on social issues launch critical inquiries that guide students’ learning? What personal and cultural resources are your students’ exploring as they engage in critical literacy practices? We invite manuscripts that disrupt traditional notions of text, negotiate spaces, and situate readers to transform their world.
Fall 2022 (Due: January 15, 2022)
In this open-themed issue, we invite researchers and teachers to submit manuscripts on all aspects of children’s literature. We accept original theoretical and empirical research papers on children’s literature. What should readers of the Journal of Children’s Literature be thinking about in regard to literature intended for children? What theoretical perspectives are being applied to deepen current understandings about children’s literature? What are key concerns about children’s literature in and across research, teaching, and publishing at this time? How is children’s literature shared in classrooms? What issues are you facing as you use children’s literature in the classroom? Join us in compiling a collection of articles that will engage those interested in children’s literature with considerations at the leading edge of the field. Join us in compiling a collection of articles that will engage those interested in children’s literature with considerations at the leading edge of the field.
Manuscripts should not exceed 20 double-spaced, typed pages (excluding references and tables). Use APA (7th edition) format. Please include an abstract of approximately 50–150 words at the beginning of the manuscript. If the manuscript contains samples of student work, photographs of students working, charts, diagrams, or other visuals, include scans upon submission; originals will be requested upon acceptance. (Permission must be secured for samples of student work and photographs of students.) Author’s name, mailing address, telephone number, fax number, email address, and school/professional affiliation should be on a separate cover page. The author’s name or any reference that would enable a reviewer to know who the author is should not appear on the manuscript.
If the submission is to a themed issue, please indicate in the cover letter the themed issue for which the manuscript is being submitted. Manuscripts will not be sent out for peer review until all information is provided. Each submitted manuscript will be screened by each editor. Any manuscript that is selected for peer review will be reviewed by at least two members of the editorial board.. Decisions will be made within 8–12 weeks of publication of the journal issue for which the submission was made. Only electronic submissions will be accepted.
Manuscripts submitted to the Journal of Children’s Literature should not be under review for publication elsewhere. In addition, manuscripts should not have been previously published in another journal.
Please submit all manuscripts to the editors, Thomas Crisp, Mary Napoli, Angie Zapata, and Vivian Yenika-Agbaw at email@example.com
Critical Conversations: Edited by Edith Campbell
An edited column of children’s book reviews.
"Critical Conversations" is meant to drive conversations about both the present and future in children's literature. It seeks to open the dialog for a literary perspective that will transform traditional pedagogy by dismantling imperialistic structures of power, representation and authority in children's literature. it will transform through critically literary analysis while highlighting voices and perspectives that have systematically been omitted from children's literature in the United States.
While each analysis is meant for educators of young children (grades K-8) and their educators, there will be no attempt made to determine an exact age or grade level for the text under discussion. However, each discussion will indicate whether or not the book is recommended and suggest alternative titles if not. It is also expected to examine microaggressions, power structures, representations and biases that may be present in the text. Books discussed in the column should have had their first release within the last five (5) years.
The analysis will become the intellectual property of the Journal of Children's Literature and should not appear elsewhere. Manuscripts for the reviews will be held to the formatting guidelines for the Journal of Children's Literature.
Discussions are encouraged from university students and faculty as well as K-8 educators.
Teachers’ Voices: Edited by Suzanne M. Knezek and Paul Ricks
An Edited Column of Literature-Based Classroom Research.
The Teachers’ Voices column is a space that privileges the research of educators in all their myriad settings, highlighting both the realities of classroom learning situations and the important work that occurs elsewhere (e.g., libraries, community centers, correctional facilities, online, at home). Additionally, ours is a collective aim to feature marginalized and minoritized voices so that diverse experiences and inquiries can flourish.
Thus, those submitting articles for this section should consider the following:
Manuscripts should not exceed 3,750 words (excluding references and tables). For all other submission requirements, please see the “Manuscript Guidelines” for the Journal of Children’s Literature. Manuscripts should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
For questions about the Teachers’ Voices column, please correspond with both column editors.
Dr. Suzanne Knezk: email@example.com
Dr. Paul Ricks: firstname.lastname@example.org
CONTACT JCL'S EDITORS
Acceptance Rate: 8-10%
Indexed in EBSCO, ERIC
Advertising inquiries may be addressed to: JCL Editors at JCL@childrensliteratureassembly.org
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