It’s on

Our first symposium is this week.

It’s booked out, but you can follow on Twitter – keep your eye on #YAlitsymposium.

Here’s the programme.

If you’re coming along, we’ll see you there.


Abstracts now available

You can now read all the abstracts for the symposium in early December.

You can register for the whole symposium, or for one of the days, here.  Registration is free. But be warned, it’s now just a week after the programme release, and there are only a few spots left. So get in now!

Books open on grass

Symposium update

Great news. We’ve received so many abstracts for the December symposium on gender and identities, we’ve decided to extend it over two days.

6 and 7 December, 2018

La Trobe University City Campus, 360 Collins St, Melbourne.

More details and registration soon.

Mary Baldwin Seminary College Yearbook: The Bluestocking, 1909

Call for papers: Gender and identities in literature for young people

Symposium: Friday 7 December, 2018

La Trobe University City Campus, 360 Collins Street Melbourne.

Abstracts due: 30 July, 2018

Young woman's hand on book


We invite short papers on the many ways in which gender and identities are performed on the page in literature for middle-grade (MG) and young adult (YA) readers.

This is an interdisciplinary symposium, welcoming papers on specific texts, themes and/or theoretical approaches, focused on fiction and nonfiction for young people. Practitioners might also choose to reflect on their own works, as part of their presentations.


Areas of interest might include:

  • Gender and agency
  • Intersectionality and identities
  • Gender in specific genres or forms
  • Representation and young people as readers
  • Traditional and recent gendered character types
  • Gendered bodies and minds
  • Heroes, heroines, sidekicks, and gangs
  • Chosen One quests as gendered journeys
  • Social constructions of gender in literature
  • Feminist theory and writing for young people.

We are interested in papers examining intersections of gender and:

  • Own voices stories
  • Emerging trends in gender representations, including non-binary and queer characters
  • Resistance and revolution
  • Memoir for/by teenagers
  • Screen adaptations of novels for young people
  • Post-colonial and/or decolonising approaches to writing and reading
  • Trends in publishing and reception.

Researchers, scholars, and postgraduates are welcome to submit an abstract of 200 words and a brief biographical note to Dr Kelly Gardiner at

Places at the symposium to hear these papers will be limited, but open to academics, postgraduates, writers, illustrators, educators, librarians, and industry professionals.


Presented by the Department of Creative Arts & English, La Trobe University.


Image: Reading, by Bianca Moraes, Creative Commons