The Centre for Children’s Book Studies brings together new multidisciplinary research across departments that focuses on the book as material object and children’s culture in its broader contexts. Home to the UK’s first MA Children’s Book Illustration, the Centre’s work has had a marked impact on British children’s publishing and beyond, fostering connections with and between researchers, practitioners and the book industry worldwide. We also build upon work in our MA Publishing and MA English Literature courses.
Our research reflects the strengths of several areas within Anglia Ruskin University: Cambridge School of Art, the Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education, and the Department of English and Media. The Centre works closely with the Faculty of Education at Cambridge University, bringing together theory and practice through an ongoing collaboration between staff and students across the two institutions.
We consider the material book from the perspectives of different disciplines that engage with it. Due to an emphasis on practice as a key tool for research and development, illustration for children’s books has become an especially important aspect of our work. From the book as historical, cultural and artistic object, our work extends out to address notions of childhood and children in the broader cultural and historical contexts.