The Second International Symposium for Children’s Literature &
The Fourth US-China Symposium for Children’s Literature
Cotsen Children’s Library, Princeton University
June 14-16, 2018

The International Symposium for Children’s Literature, first held as the US-China Symposium for Children’s Literature at the Ocean University of China in 2012, was born at an exciting moment in children’s books and reading in China. Imported and translated picture books and juvenile literature, along with parent-child shared reading practice, became increasingly familiarized in China by rising middle-class families. Exposure to fresh children’s books from a diverse range of countries and cultures, coupled with China’s booming children’s book market, helped rejuvenate locally created children’s literature. The symposium is an important venue for leading scholars from China, the USA, and an expanding list of countries to exchange the latest research on children’s literature, fertilizing the field with inquiries that cross national, cultural, and linguistic boundaries.

The Cotsen Children’s Library is proud to host the Second International Symposium for Children’s Literature & the Fourth US-China Symposium for Children’s Literature in 2018. Cotsen is a special collection of historical international children’s materials, located in Princeton University Library. It is one of the few institutions outside East Asia that house a sizable and growing research collection of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean books, magazines, manuscripts, original artwork, prints, games, and toys for children.

This symposium seeks to facilitate an exchange of ideas on new issues in children’s literature research between scholars from East and West, particularly concerning multicultural, international, and translated children’s literature in any format and genre. Related themes of interest include, but are not limited to, East Asian children’s literature, its relationship to global literature, and East Asian-themed American works. Cotsen has collaborated with the Ocean University of China to collect papers from top children’s literature scholars from China. Chinese-English simultaneous translation for the symposium’s scholarly discussions is made possible by sponsorship from the College of Liberal Arts, Journalism & Communication at the Ocean University of China and the College of Education, Health and Aviation and the School of Teaching, Learning and Educational Sciences at Oklahoma State University.

We are honored to have the following experts joining us at the symposium: Betsy Bird (book reviewer, USA), Cristina Aliagas (storybook apps researcher, Spain), Dana Sheridan (youth services expert, USA), Deborah Stevenson (book reviewer and App Authors project leader, USA), Frances Weightman (translation studies scholar, UK), Helen Wang (translator, UK), Marc Aronson (children’s author, USA), and Tara McGowan (Japan scholar and kamishibai performer, USA). Speakers will give talks and workshops on the changing roles of adult professionals who intermediate between children and literature/literacy, creating, editing, translating, reviewing, critiquing, and teaching children’s materials. As electronic publishing forms and platforms erode boundaries between those who consume content and those who produce it, we hope to stimulate dialog about the traditions, challenges, and innovations of professional intermediaries who work with children to promote reading, learning, and a love of literature.

The Call for Papers is closed.


  • Minjie Chen (Cotsen Children’s Library, Princeton)
  • Qiuying (Lydia) Wang (School of Teaching, Learning and Educational Sciences, Oklahoma State University)
  • Ocean University of China


Header image credit:

Gan, Dayong, and Helen Wang (translator). Little Rabbit’s Questions. Seattle, Washington: Candied Plums, 2016. (Cotsen N-000939) Courtesy of publisher.