Children's Literature at Warwick is made up of a diverse group of researchers and practitioners spanning English and Comparative Literary Studies, the Warwick Writing Programme, Modern Languages, Philosophy and Education. (And here we are on the right, in no particular order: (from top to bottom) Anna, Emil, Emma, Leila, Phil, Juliet, Chantal and Laura.)
Anna Donnelly is a part-time student in the Centre for Education Studies. She has been a teacher for 10 years, during which time she has had the privilege of exploring literature with children and young people. Anna trained to become a teacher for four years at Warwick and then completed a Masters in Children’s Literature at Cambridge. The standard of literature available for young people since she started her teaching career has raised the bar significantly and Anna is happy to be part of a community of others who want to think about and discuss these works.
Phil Gaydon is a part-time PhD student in Philosophy and Children's Literature. His research looks at the emerging figure of the 'childlike' learner in the works of late nineteenth-century children's authors such as George MacDonald, Juliana Ewing, Lewis Carroll, and Charles Kingsley. Besides this he has an interest in and has run workshops and events around a variety of themes and topics in children's literature both past and present. Phil will be running a UG module called Ethical Beings in Autumn 2015 which uses children's literature as a medium through which to explore the question, "What is it to become an ethical being?" He also teaches philosophy in local primary schools, often using children's literature as a stimulus for discussion.
Samantha Horsfield is a part-time PhD student in English and Comparative Literary Studies, researching difference and discrimination in contemporary children's fantasy, including the Tiffany Aching series, the Harry Potter series, the Bartimaeus trilogy and the Darran Shan series amongst others. She obtained her BA in English and Philsophy and her MA in Children's Literature from the University of Reading; she is currently responsible for all of their alumni communications including magazines, e-newsletters, blogs and social media.
Emma Parfitt obtained an honors degree in Environmental Science and an MA in Creative Writing from St Andrews University and is currently doing a Sociology PhD. She is the author of Temptation and Mozzarella. 'I call myself a storytelling researcher because I use oral storytelling with young people to understand the role of stories within a social space. I have always been interested in the behaviour of people. I am researching how young people link stories to their lives in an oral storytelling space especially in terms of emotions, behavior and identity.' Emma has links with the George Ewart Evans Storytelling Centre in Cardiff, The Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh, and Neighborhood Bridges, Minneapolis, US. She is the organisational force behind Jack Zipes' visit to Warwick in June 2016.
Leila Rasheed is a writer for children and young adults. Chips, Beans and Limousines and its sequels are published by Usborne, and Leila also writes publisher-led fiction for Working Partners and for Disney Hyperion. Rights have been sold for all series into various languages. She is represented by Julia Churchill at A M Heath. Leila has an MA in Children’s Literature (Roehampton), and an MA in Writing (Warwick). She developed and teaches the module in Writing for Children and Young People which forms part of the Warwick MA in Writing. Particular interests include diversity in contemporary British children’s literature. Leila has recently been awarded Arts Council England funding to run Megaphone, a writer development scheme for BAME writers.
Juliet Raynsford is a Senior Teaching Fellow at The Centre for Education Studies, where she is also Course Leader for the Undergraduate Programmes. Juliet's teaching interests include debating education issues, exploring theories of teaching and learning and collaborating with others to identify innovative and creative approaches to learning. Juliet's research interests have focused to date on exploring the relationship between creativity, education and inclusion. Juliet is passionate about Children's Literature, both reading it and studying it, and she has hugely enjoys teaching Children's Literature as an optional module based in The Centre for Education Studies.
Emil Rybczak is a doctoral candidate in the English department. His thesis is funded by CADRE and explores the editing and pirate publication of plays in the early eighteenth century. He is interested in ideas of England and Englishness in children's literature, its use of classical or medieval sources and the communication of tradition, particularly through the fantasy genre.
Laura Wood recently published her first children's book, Poppy Pym and the Pharaoh's Curse (Scholastic, 2015), after winning the Montegrappa Scholastic Prize for new children's writing. She is also an academic, and her research focusses on the figures of the woman and child reader as portrayed in nineteenth-century literature and the wider social, cultural, and political implications of these representations and their place in time. Laura will be co-teaching Nineteenth-Century Children's Literature with Chantal Wright in Spring 2016.
Chantal Wright is Associate Professor of Translation as a Literary Practice in English and Comparative Literary Studies. She is also a literary translator with a specialisation in children's literature and her work has twice been shortlisted for the Marsh Award for Children's Literature in Translation. She was recently nominated to the IBBY 2016 Honour List for her translation of Milena Baisch's Anton and Piranha (Andersen Press, 2013). Chantal will be co-teaching Nineteenth-Century Children's Literature with Laura Wood in Spring 2016.