1st Edition

Age in David Almond’s Oeuvre A Multi-Method Approach to Studying Age and the Life Course in Children’s Literature

    220 Pages 2 Color & 11 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    In recent decades, age studies has started to emerge as a new approach to study children’s literature. This book builds on that scholarship but also significantly extends it by exploring age in various aspects of children’s literature: the age of the author, the characters, the writing style, the intended readership and the real reader. Moreover, the authors explore what different theories and methods can be used to study age in children’s literature, and what their affordances and limits are. The analyses combine age studies with life writing studies, cognitive narratology, digital humanities, comparative literary studies, reader-response research and media studies. To ensure coherence, the book offers an in-depth exploration of the oeuvre of a single author, David Almond. The aesthetic and thematic richness of Almond’s works has been widely recognised. This book adds to the understanding of his oeuvre by offering a multi-faceted analysis of age. In addition to discussing the film adaptation of his best-known novel Skellig, this book also offers analyses of works that have received less attention, such as Counting Stars, Clay and Bone Music. Readers will also get a fuller understanding of Almond as a crosswriter of literature for children, adolescents and adults.

    Introduction (Vanessa Joosen)

    1. Counting Stars, discounting years? Life writing and memory studies (Vanessa Joosen)
    2. Social and material minds through the lens of cognitive narratology in Clay and Bone Music (Emma-Louise Silva)
    3. "Weird, but lovely": A digital exploration of age in David Almond’s oeuvre (Lindsey Geybels)
    4. An exploration of reader-response research through My Name is Mina (Leander Duthoy)
    5. Constructing age transmedially: Framing age in text and on screen in Skellig (Michelle Anya Anjirbag and Frauke Pauwels)
    6. Eating fire: Close reading David Almond as a crosswriter (Vanessa Joosen)



    Vanessa Joosen is a full professor of English literature and children’s literature at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

    Michelle Anya Anjirbag is an affiliated postdoctoral researcher at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

    Leander Duthoy is a PhD student at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

    Lindsey Geybels is a PhD student in children's literature and digital humanities at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

    Frauke Pauwels is a postdoctoral researcher, visiting lecturer and co-organiser of the Children’s Literature Summer School at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

    Emma-Louise Silva is a postdoctoral researcher and visiting lecturer at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.