CFP: Dreams

Jahrbuch der Gesellschaft für Kinder- und Jugendliteraturforschung 2020
Editors: Prof. Gabriele von Glasenapp (Universität zu Köln), Prof. Emer O’Sullivan (Leuphana Universität Lüneburg), Prof. Caroline Roeder (PH Ludwigsburg), Prof. Michael Staiger (Universität zu Köln), Prof. Ingrid Tomkowiak (Universität Zürich)
Stichtag: 2019 10 10

Children’s and young adult literature is a realm of dreamers: The dream personnel ranges from Marie Stahlbaum in E.T.A. Hoffmann’s The Nutcracker and the Mouse Kingto Carroll’s Alice and Kästner’s Emil, to name just a few dream classics.Dream motifs and dreams as narrative models permeate all the narrative formats of children’s and young adult literature and media. There is a close phenomenological link between dream, narrative and art suggested, for instance, by the analogy between writing and dreaming, or the designation of cinema as a “dream screen”. There is very obviously a creative dimension to the dream.

The multitude of titles that engage with the phenomenon of dreaming and their significance, even just within the corpus of the so-called classics, would lead one to expect an extensive engagement with the topic in children’s and young adult literature and media research. However, this is not at all the case. Although there are various interfaces to the dream in the extensive studies on fantasy, there has not yet been a focused examination of dreams in children’s and young adult literature and media from psychoanalytical or narratological pointsof view. Nor has it been examined as a contribution to utopian or dystopian studies, or to cultural history (for instance in terms of the aesthetics of the night), or investigations of the dream in the context of popular culture, or of the dream as a metaphor. Visual media, radio plays and film should be particularly rich fields for investigation, be it with regard to their specific forms (poetics or the aesthetics of the dream) or to the “dream factory” when understood as a cultural-industrial system.

Contributions for the fourth volume of the open access, peer-reviewed Jahrbuch der Gesellschaft für Kinder- und Jugendliteraturforschung |GKJF (Yearbook of the German Children’s Literature Research Society), should address the historical and contemporary dimensions of the dream in children’s and young adult literature in its various medial forms (novels, short prose, poetry, plays, picturebooks, comics, graphic novels, audiovisual media, films, computer games)from both a theoretical and material perspective. Articles may be in German or English, and while articles on German children’s and young adult literature and media are particularly welcome, the editors also welcome proposals on other cultural and linguistic areas.

Possible approaches to the topic of “dream” with reference to children’s or young adult literature or media are:

  • Narratology
  • Theoretical approaches to dreams from a psychoanalytical or psychological perspective
  • Utopia, dystopia
  • Fantastic, fantastic writing and narration
  • Night, aesthetics of the night
  • Horror and fear
  • Sleep of reason
  • Dream as a metaphor
  • Surrealism

General Section:

Beyond the focus theme, the Yearbookwill publish up to three open contributionson questions of children’s and young adult literature and media from a historical or theoretical perspective; proposals for these open contributions are also welcome.


Please submit an abstract of up to 300 words for an article on the focus theme or for an open contribution by 10.10.2019.The abstract should provide a short summary with reference to theoretical positions, and name the main literature to which the article will refer.

The article itself should not exceed 40,000 characters (including spaces, footnotes and bibliography), and should be submitted to the editors as a Word document no later than 01.03.2020.

Please send your abstract to:

We look forward to receiving your proposal. A style sheet will be sent once an abstract has been accepted. The Yearbook will be published online in December 2020.


  • Prof. Gabriele von Glasenapp, Universität zu Köln
  • Prof. Emer O’Sullivan, Leuphana Universität Lüneburg
  • Prof. Caroline Roeder, PH Ludwigsburg
  • Prof. Michael Staiger, Universität zu Köln
  • Prof. Ingrid Tomkowiak, Universität Zürich

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