Staff profile - Clare Bradford

Prof Clare Bradford

Position: Emeritus Professor
Faculty or Division: Faculty of Arts and Education
Department: Office of the Exec. Dean A&E
Campus: Off-Campus (Home)
Phone: +61 3 924 46487 +61 3 924 46487



I hold a Personal Chair as Alfred Deakin Professor in the School of Communication and Creative Arts at Deakin University, where I work in the field of literary studies. I have published 13 books and over 80 essays and journal articles on children's and other literature. My most recent book is The Middle Ages in Children's Literature (Palgrave), which explores how the Middle Ages are used and abused in medievalist texts for the young--that is, post-medieval texts which respond to and deploy medieval culture.

From 2007-2011 I served as President of the International Research Society for Children's Literature, the main international scholarly organisation in the field. In this role I met scholars from all over the world undertaking research in children's literature. In 2009 the Trudeau Foundation (Canada) named me as its first Visiting International Fellow, and during 2010 I spent most of the year working with Canadian scholars at the University of Winnipeg's Centre for Young People's Texts and Cultures. In 2011 I was elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities.


  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Auckland, 1970
  • Master of Arts, Wellington, Victoria U. of, 1972
  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Sydney, 1978
  • Master of Education, University of Sydney, 1983


Children's Literature Association

International Research Society for Children's Literature

Australasian Children's Literature Association for Research

Association for Canadian Studies in Australia and New Zealand

Professional activities

Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities, elected 2011

Visiting International Fellow, Trudeau Foundation (Canada), from 2009

Director of the Centre for Memory, Imagination and Invention, 2010-2014

Joint Editor of Book Series, Critical Approaches to Children's Literature (Palgrave UK)

President, International Research Society for Children's Literature (2007-2011)

Vice-President, International Research Society for Children's Literature (2005-2007)

Editor, Papers: Explorations into Children's Literature, from 1996

Member of Editorial Board, Jeunesse: Young People, Texts, Cultures (University of Winnipeg, Canada)

Publication Committee, Children's Literature Association (USA) 2007-2010

Referee, Children's Literature (Johns Hopkins University Press)

 President, Australasian Children's Literature Association for Research, 1998-2002


Teaching Interests

Children's literature, postcolonialism, medievalism

Related Links


Awards and prizes

Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, 2011

Inaugural Visiting International Trudeau Fellowship, 2009-2011, Trudeau Foundation, Canada

Children's Literature Association Honor Book for Unsettling Narratives: Postcolonial Readings of Children's Literature, 2009

Children's Literature Association Book Award for outstanding book on children's literature published in 2001 for Reading Race: Aboriginality in Australian Children's Literature

International Research Society for Children's Literature (IRSCL) Award, for Reading Race: Aboriginality in Australian Children's Literature, 2003


Research interests

Children's literature: social, cultural and political aspects; postcolonial studies and literatures; utopian studies; medievalisms in texts and culture

Research grants

2011 ARC Discovery Grant (Smith, Bradford, Moruzi) From colonial to modern: Transnational girlhood in Australian, New Zealand, and Canadian print cultures (1840-1940)
(2011-13): $261,350

2007 ARC Linkage Grant (Beavis, Bradford, O’Mara, Walsh), Literacy in the digital world of the twenty-first century: learning from computer games
(2007-9): $151,000

2005 ARC Discovery Grant (Bradford, Ommundsen) Building cultural citizenship: Multiculturalism and children's literature (2005-8): $267,000

2003 ARC Discovery Grant (Bradford, McCallum, Mallan, Stephens), Transformative utopianism: Contemporary children's literature responding to
changing world orders from Glasnost to 11 September, 2001 (2003-5): $271.490

2002 SCHRCC Grant: Member of funded project, Discourses of home in Canadian Children's Literature, Reimer et al, University of Winnipeg: $Can96,000

Research page



Selected Recent Publications:


Bradford, C. (2015) The Middle Ages in Children’s Literature. Basingstoke: Palgrave.

Mallan, K. and C. Bradford, eds. (2011) Theorising Children’s Literature and Film. Basingstoke: Palgrave.

Bradford, C., Mallan, K., Stephens, J. & McCallum, R. (2008) New World Orders in Children's Literature: Utopian Transformations. London: Palgrave.

Bradford, C. (2007) Unsettling Narratives: Postcolonial Readings of Children’s Literature. Waterloo, ON: Wilfrid Laurier University Press.

Book Chapters

Bradford, Clare (2014) ‘Here Be Dragons: Mapping Medievalism for the Young’, in Andrew Lynch and Louise D’Arcens (eds), International Medievalism and Popular Culture, London: Cambria Press, pp. 207-226.

Bradford, Clare (2013) ‘Monsters: Monstrous Identities in Young Adult romance’, in Yan Wu, Kerry Mallan and Roderick McGillis (eds) (Re)Imagining the World: Children’s Literature’s Response to Changing Times, Springer Asia, Beijing, pp. pp. 115-126.

Bradford, Clare (2013) ‘Medievalism and nationhood in children’s literature’, in Björn Sundmark and Christopher Kelen (eds), The Nation in Children’s Literature: Nations of Childhood, Routledge, New York, pp. 209-221.

Bradford, Clare (2012) ‘“Where Happily Ever After Happens Every Day”: The Medievalisms of Disney’s Princesses, in Tison Pugh and Susan Aronstein (eds), The Disney Middle Ages: A Fairy Tale Past, Palgrave Macmillan, New York, pp. 171-188.

Bradford, Clare (2011) ‘Multiculturalism and post-colonialism’, in Children’s Literature Studies: A Research Handbook, ed. M. O. Grenby and Kimberley Reynolds, Palgrave Macmillan, London, pp. 162-169.

Bradford, Clare (2011) ‘Reading Indigeneity: The Ethics of Interpretation and Representation’, in Shelby Wolf, Karen Coats, Patricia Enciso and Christine Jenkins (ed) Handbook of Research on Children’s and Young Adult Literature. New York: Routledge, pp. 331-341.

Bradford, Clare, and Raffaella Baccolini, (2011) ‘Journeying Subjects: Spatiality and Identity in Children’s Texts’, in Kerry Mallan and Clare Bradford (eds) Theorising Children’s Literature and Film. Basingstoke: Palgrave, pp. 36-56.

Massey, Geraldine, and Clare Bradford (2011) ‘Children as Ecocitizens: Ecocriticism and Environmental Texts’, in Kerry Mallan and Clare Bradford (eds) (2011) Theorising Children’s Literature and Film. Basingstoke: Palgrave, pp. 109-126.

Journal Articles

Bradford, Clare, ‘Made in New Zealand: Place and Enchantment in Margaret Mahy’s Picture Books’, Children’s Literature Association Quarterly 39.1 (2014), 111-120.

Bradford, Clare, ‘Instilling postcolonial nostalgias: Ned Kelly narratives for children’, Journal of Australian studies, vol. 36, no. 2 (2012), 191-206.

Bradford, Clare, ‘The return of the fairy: Australian medievalist fantasy for the
young’, Australian Literary Studies, 16.3-4 (2011), 115-135.

Bradford, Clare (2011) ‘Children’s Literature in a Global Age: Transnational and Local Identities’, Barnboken: Journal of Children’s Literature Research 2 (2011), 20-34.

Bradford, Clare (2010) ‘”Everything must go!”: Consumerism and Reader Positioning in M.T. Anderson’s Feed’, Jeunesse 2.2: 128-137.

Bradford, Clare (2009) 'Muslim-Christian relations and the Third Crusade: Medievalist Imaginings' ,International Research in Children's Literature 2.2 (December 2009) 177-191.

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