Fellowship Program 2021 (Part 2)

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!

From left to right: Dorota Sadowska, Maxime Boeuf, Tehmina Pirzada and Joseph Kebe-Nguema

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.

Fellowship Program 2021 (Part 1)

In 2020 out of 18 invited guests only four were able to visit us due to the pandemic. With that in mind the International Yout Library was more than happy to reopen it’s doors for the first fellowship recipients in 2021. Just as the previous years we were looking forward to the new guests, exciting topics and interesting conversations.

Mateusz Swietlicke (Poland)

mattheuz-1Mateusz Swietlicke from Poland is an Assistant Professor at the University of Wrocław where he teaches at the Institute of English Studies.
From February until April 2021, Mateusz came to the International Youth Library to research for his book about Memory and the images of Eastern Europe in Canadian historical fiction, published after the year 1991.
He says that the collection of the IYL is spectacular and the great amount of sources he found here helped him a lot with his book.
Mateusz first interest in children’s literature began when he was 10 years old and he read the book “Anne of Green Gables”. Since that, children in literature have always been a subject in his academic life. He studied American and Ukrainian Literature and has a PhD in Literary Studies. Since 2015 Mateusz has been regularly publishing about children’s literature and describes himself not only an expert in that but also in popular culture and film.
The next step in Mateusz future is to finally finish his book project and then return to Munich and it’s ‘beautiful places’ ­ as he called it. 

Volha Hapeyeva (Belarus)

VolhaVolha Hapeyeva from Belarus came to the International Youth Library to research for her extraordinary project: The Anthology of non-rhymed poetry for children from different authors in different countries. Volha wrote her first book for children when she was only 13. This book sparked her interest in how other authors across the world work with children’s literature.
Her interest in languages made her study English, German and French and with that, in combination with Volhas studies at the Linguistic University in Minsk, it is no surprise that she calls herself a poet, writer, translator and linguist. Even though Volha’s project is about poetry, she hopes to gain a deeper understanding of how poetry works and to increase her poem collection in the future. We are excited to read about Volhas project as she plans to release it in German as well and hope to welcome her back soon at the IYL.

Cristina Gumirato (Italy)

Christina (1)Cristina Gumirato is a PhD Student in education at the Cattolica University of Milan from Italy. She became interested in children’s literature during her work as a primary school teacher and will be holding workshops for MA students about children’s literature in the future. After Cristinas dissertations about Beatrix Potter and Jella Lepman (the founder of the IYL), the Italian came to Munich to write about Children’s Literature in Europe in the post-WWII period with focus on IYL and Italian scholars. In this way, Cristina hopes to give a voice to Jella Lepman’s message and to all the scholars that collaborated with her.

An important statement from Cristina is:

“All literature is born from the human need to tell stories in order to better understand the universe we live in – they help us to live, to survive; they help children to grow up!”

Liliana Santos (Portugal)

LilianaLiliana Santos came across the fellowship program of the International Youth Library in December 2019 during her research for her PhD. But unfortunately the application deadline had already passed. Nevertheless, she did not forget about the IYL and realized her stay as a fellow in May and June 2021.
She has always been interested in literature and has a Bachelor’s degree in English and German language, literature and culture.
Lilianas goal while staying in Munich is to enlarge her theoretical research in general and also to get in contact with the first editions of the books she will analyze for her project about informed children, empowered citizens: silence, voice, gender and racial representations in Effie Lee Newsome, Virginia Hamilton and Jacqueline Woodson.
Liliana states that the IYL was very inspiring and that she is extremely happy and grateful to have worked here.

Fellowship Programm 2020

A Review

In December 2019, the team of the International Youth Library received a long list of names, thesis topics and countries with the information about the following year’s scholarship recipients. Eighteen guests from eleven countries had been invited to visit us in 2020. With a little delay, our first guest of 2020 arrived in February:

Devika Mehran from India.
Her project: Understanding generic development and the construction of childhood in 20th century children’s fantasy. A study of selected British children’s fantasy fiction. It was such a pleasure to welcome Devika to our book castle. Here, she said, she had easy access to specialist literature in large quantities – a lot of which was difficult or impossible to get hold of in her home country. Devika also emphasized that she really appreciated the warm welcome right from day one and the great help in finding everything she needed for her research. In her own words, the IYL offered “a beautiful and mind-blowing experience”.

But then… it doesn’t need to be explained what happened at the beginning of spring 2020. Flights were canceled and borders were closed in the hope of stopping the pandemic. So Devika had to leave us, quite suddenly, earlier than she thought. Many of our guests had to reschedule or cancel their stay and the whole book castle went into a “Little Briar Rose-Slumber“.Only 4 months later, however, in the middle of July, our next international guest was able to visit us.

It was Vera Veldhuizen from the Netherlands, who stayed in Munich until the end of August, together with her husband. She was working on her PhD thesis with the title: The silencing impact of competing truth narratives in children’s literature. Because of all the regulations, she was only able to visit a little of Munich, but fortunately she was here during the „Blutenburger Sommerbühne“ and enjoyed some cultural gems as open air events at the castle. When Vera left, she just said one thing: “I will come back!”  

In the fall, many of our fellows had to cancel their stay, too, which saddened us all very much, even though the reasons were very understandable. Nevertheless, at the end of September and on 1st October we welcomed another two international researchers:

Sofia Venzel from Russia and Jessica Silva from Brazil.
Fortunately both currently live in the European Union (Spain and Portugal respectively), which made it possible for them to travel to Munich during the pandemic. Both enjoyed their stay very much and used the opportunity to do research for their projects. For Jessica it was „Representations of Aging in Children’s Literature. Other cultural and linguistic contexts.“, while Sofia worked on the subject of Children‘s Books on Soviet (Communist) History”. Because so many other fellows had to cancel their visit to the IYL, Jessica and Sofia were offered the chance to extend their visit and both stayed until mid-December. For Jessica and Sofia, it wasn’t an easy time here, because all the restaurants, museums, and other interesting sites in and around Munich were closed. Nevertheless, the whole team of the IYL made a big effort to make their stay as rewarding as possible and in the end, there was even some snow in preparation for Christmas. 

Out of 18 invited guests, only four were able to visit us in 2020. We were happy about every single one of them and hope that their stay with us was unforgettable (in a positive way 😉 ). Although it was a very difficult year, the International Youth Library has still done its utmost to promote and support international research on children’s and young adult literature.

We are looking forward to the coming months, to new guests, exciting topics and interesting conversations.

Fellowship Program 2019

Meet some of our 2019 fellows from ten countries:

Juan Senis

March – May

– Juan Senis

Juan Senis from Spain is a professor of children’s and young adult literature at the University of Zaragoza. In addition to his academic activities, he also writes books for children whenever he finds some spare time. He started focusing on children’s and youth literature after finishing his PhD and is currently working on an international comparison of children’s poetry. Juan, having a keen interest in languages, is well-versed in Spanish, Italian and French literature. He came to the IYL to have access to a wider range of books for a work-in-progress survey, concerning children’s poetry in Portuguese, English and German. As a big fan of texts in verse, he noticed that there are not a lot of publications about children’s and youth poetry. The main aim of his project is to find out if there is a common trend in the poetry from different countries and languages. At the IYL, he did not only find a wealth of international books, but he was also verygrateful for the help he received from the people working here. After the end of his scholarship, he went back to work at the university and intends to publish two articles with the material he gathered at the IYL.


Dao Trung Uyen


Dao Trung Uyen

– Dao Trung Uyen

Dao Trung Uyen, aka Sophia, from Vietnam is a real “bookworm”. Since her early childhood, she has spent hours and hours in libraries, enjoying the fascination of reading.  In 2014, she came to Ilmenau in Thüringen to do a Master’s degree in Media- and Communication Science; during her stay there, she became aware of the lack of children literature in her home country. Convinced that educated children are the basis for creating a better world, she came to the Weiterlesen

Online now: The White Ravens 2019

With great pleasure we present to you the 2019 edition of our annual catalogue
»The White Ravens«.

This year’s cover is teeming with a flock of curious, book-loving birds in blue, yellow and white. The feathered friends, both big and small, are eagerly pecking at pages on the search for their favourite book. Diego Bianki, the creator of this picture, is also the illustrator of the book »Cuentos cansados«, which was selected for the »White Ravens 2018« list.

The »White Ravens« catalogue is the most important annual publication of the International Youth Library. It aims to promote quality in children’s book publishing and has become an increasingly useful tool for anyone interested in looking beyond national borders.

This year, the »White Ravens« contain a selection of 200 notable children’s and young adult books from 58 countries published in 37 languages.

The printed catalogue is published prior to the Frankfurt Book Fair. Meet us at our booth in Hall 3.0/K118 and get your personal copy. Or read this year’s White Ravens online:

James Krüss Preis an Frida Nilsson verliehen


Torben Liebau, Erbengemeinschaft James Krüss und Frida Nilsson

Bereits zum vierten Mal wurde der James Krüss Preis für internationale Kinder- und Jugendliteratur in der Internationalen Jugendbibliothek verliehen. Am 4. Juli 2019 fanden sich 140 Gäste zur Verleihung des mit 8.000 Euro dotierten Preises im Jella Lepman-Saal ein und feierten die schwedische Autorin Frida Nilsson, eine„begnadete Erzählerin und Meisterin der spannenden Dramaturgie“ (Jurybegründung). Ihre Übersetzerin Friederike Buchinger wurde ebenfalls gewürdigt.


Schamlos – Auftakt zur Reihe Links, rechts, oben, unten, mittendrin, außen vor

Autorin Nancy Herz in der Internationalen Jugendbibliothek

Lesung Samuel-Heinicke-Realschule

(Ex-)Muslimas, Autorinnen und Feministinnen: Amina Bile, Sofia Nesrine Srour und Nancy Herz haben mit ihrem Buch Schamlos für großes Aufsehen in Norwegen gesorgt. Hier  thematisieren die in den Medien als „schamlose Mädchen“ bekannten jungen Frauen, wie durch (absurde) Ratschläge, Verhaltensregeln und einen patriarchalischen Sitten- und Ehrenkodex die Freiheit von Mädchen und Frauen beschnitten werden . Als Plädoyer für Selbstbestimmung und Entfaltungsmöglichkeiten wurde Schamlos u.a. mit dem Ehrenpreis Fritt Ord ausgezeichnet.

Schulklassenlesungen mit Nancy Herz

Am 23./24. Mai hatten Schüler*innen der Samuel-Heinicke-Realschule und der Bavarian International School die Möglichkeit mit Nancy Herz das Buch Schamlos zu besprechen. Begleitet wurde Nancy dabei von Dr. Ines Galling von der IJB, die als Übersetzerin und Diskussionspartnerin fungierte. Weiterlesen

Kinderbücher aus der arabischen Welt

Am Dienstag, 7.Mai, luden die Internationale Jugendbibliothek und die Stadtbibliothek Am Gasteig zu einer ganz besonderen Veranstaltung mit einer literarisch-musikalischen Reise durch die arabischsprachige Kinderliteratur! Weiterlesen

“Tell us about Momo” – video competition winner Khaled Cholha visits the International Youth Library

Samir Éditeur, Goethe-Institute Lebanon and Assabil started the video competition „Raconte-nous Momo !“ in cooperation with the IYL on the occasion of the publication of Michael Ende’s Momo in Arabic. They invited young people from 10-14 years to talk about Momo in a 2-min video in Lebanon and Jordan. A Jury composed by Amira Elmasry (Goethe-Institut), Cathy Khattar (Assabil) and Ebtihal Shedid (translator of Momo in Arabic) chose 7 finalists: Shared on the social media channels, Khaleds video was the most liked and shared and he won the first prize: A trip to the Bavarian capital Munich! Weiterlesen

Kevin Brooks feiert 60. Geburtstag in der Internationalen Jugendbibliothek

Die Stiftung Internationale Jugendbibliothek und die dtv Verlagsgesellschaft luden am Donnerstag, 11. April anlässlich des 60. Geburtstags des britischen Autors Kevin Brooks in das Schloss Blutenburg. Kevin Brooks zählt zu den radikalsten und interessantesten Stimmen der britischen Jugendliteratur. Mit seinem viel beachteten Debütroman „Martyn Pig“ betrat er 2002 die literarische Bühne und feierte daraufhin mit Büchern wie „Lucas“, „Kissing the Rain“, „The Road of the Dead“ oder „IBoy“ nationale und internationale Erfolge. Sein Roman „Bunker Diary“ wurde kontrovers diskutiert, in „Naked“ taucht er in seine eigene Vergangenheit in der Londoner Punkszene der 70er Jahre ein. Vor kurzem kam sein neuer Roman „Dogchild“ (Deutsch: „Deathland Dogs“) auf den Markt, den er bei zwei Veranstaltungen in Schloss Blutenburg vorstellte. Weiterlesen