Our Key Note Speakers

Ute Dettmar

23.8. | 5:00 pm

„Transmedial story telling: Cornelia Funke“

Ute Dettmar is Professor of Children’s and Young Adult Literature and Head of the Institute of Children’s Literature at Goethe-University Frankfurt. She has worked on historical and contemporary children’s literature and media. Her research interests include literary history, seriality and transmedia storytelling, popular culture and memory studies.

Gerhard Lauer

24.8. | 10.00 am

„What makes children read? About imaginary friends and other assorted asymmetric interactions“

Gerhard Lauer is a professor of book studies at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz and combines philological research questions with a book studies approach. His research is focused on empirical reading studies and digital humanities. He conducted high profile research in literary history and endorsed a thorough rethinking of important concepts used in literary studies in the late 1990s, which led to a noticeable gain in clarity in terminology and methods in literary studies. Furthermore, he is considered one of the pioneers of the introduction of questions and methods of digital humanities into German studies. This paradigm shift led him to research empirically how texts and stories are structured, shared, and how they are read.

Maren Conrad

26.8. | 09.00 am

„Children‘s Literature and Disability Studies“

Maren Conrad is Professor of Literary Studies and Didactics at the University of Cologne. Between 2017 and 2022, she was Junior Professor of Modern German Literature with a focus on children’s and youth literature at FAU Erlangen-Nuremberg. Her research interests include: Precarious literatures: non-canonized (children’s) literature of the 19th century, fantasy research and engaged dystopias, performative, multimodal, and transmedial storytelling, ballad research, inclusion, equality, and diversity in contemporary children’s literature, computer games and other youth-cultural, digital, and multimodal formats.

Emer O’Sullivan

27.8. | 09.00 am

“Children’s Literature in Translation: Issues and Approaches”

Emer O’Sullivan is Professor of English Literature at Leuphana University in Lüneburg, Germany. She has published widely in both German and English on comparative literature, image studies, children’s literature and translation, and has received international recognition for her pioneering work in comparative children’s literature studies. Kinderliterarische Komparatistik  (C. Winter 2000) won the biennial IRSCL Award for outstanding research in 2001, and Comparative Children’s Literature (Routledge 2005) the Children’s Literature Association 2007 Book Award. Imagining Sameness and Difference in Children’s Literature (co-edited with Andrea Immel) was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2016. The second updated and expanded edition of her Historical Dictionary of Children’s Literature (Rowman & Littlefield) came out in 2023. She was a member of the Board of the IRSCL (2001-2005) and served as its Vice-President from 2003-2005, and is currently co-editor of the Jahrbuch der Gesellschaft für Kinder- und Jugendliteraturforschung | GKJF(Yearbook of the German Children’s Literature Research Society). 

Vanessa Joosen

28.8. | 09.00 am

„Age studies and digital methods: analysing children’s literature“

Vanessa Joosen is full professor of English literature and children’s literature at the University of Antwerp and the vice-president of the International Research Society for children’s literature. She has published books and articles on, among others, fairy tales, digital humanities, age studies and translation studies.

Iris Schäfer

30.8. | 09.00 am

„Fashion in Children‘s Media“

Iris Schäfer is a research assistant at the Institute of Children’s and Young Adult Literature Research at Goethe-University in Frankfurt am Main. In her dissertation, “Von der Hysterie zur Magersucht” (2015), she examined representations of illness in historical and contemporary YA literature. Since then, she has worked on an edition project on Lou Andreas-Salomé’s YA Literature, focused on the narrated dream and is currently working on narrated fashion in children’s media.