This fortnight has been a whirlwind of conferences. I was at the Society for the History of Children and Youth at Rutgers in Camden, NJ, the week before last, and this week have been attending the Rhetoric Society of Europe conference in Norwich, England.
The two conferences have been very diverse in terms of audience and goals, but both have been productive.
At SHCY I presented on nuclear toys in postwar America – that is, toys that contained polonium and other radioactive elements; at RSE I talked about Topps’ Freedom’s War bubblegum cards, and the messages they aimed to pass on to children about military service.
I really enjoyed talking about these subjects, and as I will be beginning to put my prospectus together imminently, I hope that the excellent feedback I received at these presentations will allow me to do this.
Both the items I spoke about are fascinating (to me!) and provide a wealth of avenues to talk about children and political life. Although this post does not take the form of an analysis or a thesis, it is by way of introduction and I hope it will be a springboard for more discussion on future posts.