We continue with introducing our fellows from 2021 and try to give the world an insight on the amazing articles, dissertations and books our guests research on during their stay at the International Youth Library.
Dorota Sadowska (Poland)
Dorota Sadowska from Warsaw, Poland, always loved reading books since she was a little child. Therefore, it is no surprise that she named her dog “Fizia“ which is the polish name for “Pippi (Longstocking)“. Dorota even says that Fizia is just as stubborn, idiosyncratic and wild as the original Pippi. Usually Dorota works and teaches at the University of Warsaw, where she also studied German. She already visited the International Youth Library in the summer of 2019 after finding out about the wide range of children’s and youth literature displayed here through the internet. This time, Dorota stayed for two months to research for an article about “War Childhood in Silesia and Upper Silesia 1939-1945, based on memories of German and Polish Silesians”. Children and childhood during the Second World War in general is a topic that Dorota is very interested in, for example everyday life in war, the holocaust, and resistance against Nazis. All issues that have also been revisited in recent years, especially in picture books, Graphic Novels and Comics.
All good things come in threes – so if Dorota decides to visit Munich, and it’s architecture, castles, museums, and parks again in the future, we would be more than happy to welcome her back.
Maxime Boeuf (France)
Maxime Boeuf is a German teacher at the University of Aix Marseille and studied at the University in Tübingen in the past. His interest in international children’s literature began in 2018 during his internship at the Erich-Kästner-Museum in Dresden. Therefore, it is no surprise that Maxime chose a German institution to research for his PhD about colonial Young Adult literature at the end of the 19th century.
He enjoyed his three-month long stay in Munich very much because the library and the city are according to him “wonderful”. After his PhD Maxime would like to continue his research about children’s and Young Adult literature and we would welcome him here anytime!
Tehmina Pirzada (Pakistan)
Tehmina Pirzada, currently teaching and living in Qatar, was our first Pakistani fellow ever. During her time as a fellow at the University of Indiana, where she earned her PhD in English, Tehmina got interested in children’s culture and literature, because she started thinking about the representation of children, especially girls, in Muslim communities.
She came to the IYL to research for an article that focuses on poetry written as a tribute for Malala Yousafzai, Pakistan’s youngest Nobel Prize Winner. She examines how Malala and the poets writing about her represent Malala as a Muslim girl and as an activist from the Global South.
Tehmina is very dedicated to make people aware of the importance of South Asian youth cultures and Muslim Girlhood. She thinks Muslim Girls are formidable members of our communities and therefore their representation both real and fictional is necessary and crucial for the progress of women’s rights in South Asia. In the future Tehmina is eager to write a book about this exact topic.
Although she only stayed one month in Munich, she loved spending time here, learning about the beautiful culture, art, and people of the city.
Joseph Kebe-Nguema (France)
Joseph Kebe-Nguema is, like Maxime, from France and a PhD candidate at the Sorbonne University in Paris. He decided to apply for a fellowship at the International Youth Library after his PhD supervisor told him about it.
Josephs interest in German youth literature didn’t start off on good terms: Back in 2013 the Frenchman followed the debates in Germany about anti-black and anti-romani terms that were used in children’s books (e.g. in Otfried Preußlers “Die kleine Hexe”). This combined with having some difficult experiences in Germany himself, Joseph decided to find out more about race in German youth literature. During his three-month long stay, Joseph researched about the constructions of race and gender in East and West German youth literature for his dissertation.
Joseph is deeply convinced that youth literature more or less reflects society’s values, which is why it is important to analyze it critically. We are very much looking forward to hear more about his research in the future.