The Rise of Latinx Literature for Youth

Country: USA

City: New York City

Abstr. due: 01.03.2017

Dates: 04.01.18 — 07.01.18

Area Of Sciences: Humanities; Cultural science;

Organizing comittee e-mail:

Organizers: Marilisa Jimenez Garcia/ Lehigh University


Literature for youth is an established tradition in Latinx culture, from Jose Martí’s La Edad de Oro (1889) to Pura Belpré’s folklore and Ernesto Galarza’s “mini-libros” to Matt de la Peña’s 2016 Newbery Medal win. This panel seeks to examine the current and historical role of literature for youth in the Latin/a literary world and how Latino/a writers portray youth cultures and subcultures for U.S. audiences. Papers responding critically to the following themes (though not limited to those presented here) are solicited:

  1. In addition to critical race theory (CRT), LatCrit, and postcolonial theory, how do critical theories and scholarship in Latin American Studies, Latinx Studies, Critical Ethnic Studies, and American Studies, provide a lens for Latino/a literature for youth? 
  2. How can we (re)consider the work of pioneering authors of such as Pura Belpré and Ernesto Galarza?
  3. In what ways do Latinx writers challenge and provide alternative narratives to mainstream U.S. society, including issues such as race, class, and gender (i.e. masculinity, femininity, machismo)?
  4. How do Latinx writers interrogate, revise and/or disrupt Latin American and Caribbean traditions of the homeland, such as government, race relations, class and gender/sexuality, including the emergence of the term “Latinx”? How are Latin American and Caribbean lands, cultures, languages, and societies depicted by Latinxs addressing younger audiences?  
  5. To what degree do emerging authors in Latinx literature for youth (e.g. Judith Ortíz-Cofer, Ashley Hope Perez, Pam Muñoz Ryan, Marjorie Agosín) differ/overlap with earlier generations of authors (e.g. Belpré, Nicholasa Mohr, Sandra Cisneros)?  
  6. Is there a pan-Latino/a tradition for youth?

Conference Web-Site: