Thanks for your suggestions on the YA critics! It's nice to have some help. My advisor is great but admitted he knows very little about the YA spectrum of my project, so for that I will largely be on my own. That just makes it all the more exciting. I am currently doing some research for the adolescent lit class this semester, but I keep getting a bit sidetracked in thinking of it through the lens of my thesis. Oops.
The only danger is getting lost in the John Green videos. The man is awesome; his talent and passion are seriously inspiring.
OK, folks, so I'm really REALLY excited about my final thesis project, in which I plan to use Wordsworth's defense of Lyrical Ballads in comparison to legitimizations of young adult literature. Wordsworth managed to make space for himself in the canon; can YAL do the same, especially if it exhibits some of the traits Wordsworth presents?
I spoke with my advisor today who gave me the greenlight, and in the course of our discussion, he asked what I knew about the current defenses of YAL. I talked a little bit about what I've seen so far; fortunately, they ARE out there, I am far from the first. We talked about how it would make it even more compelling if there were YA authors who had done the same as Wordsworth did, with direct defenses of YAL legitimacy. I do know that current YA authors are out there and talking about the genre and arguing for its acceptance as mature texts.
I know it...I just...don't know where I've seen all of it. I came up with a list of authors that I can either recall seeing commentary from or who are just particularly outspoken: Neil Gaiman, Chris Crutcher, and John Green (but where are my lady-authors, yo??).
SO! My faithful YA-loving crew, have you seen anything from current YA authors in which they discuss critical reception to YA Lit or argue for its legitimacy? Do tell!
Why is it that students are drawn to the creepy, horrifying, disturbing, and just generally dark topics? I guess it's true for all of us to some extent in our lives. But it seems more so during adolescence; if you want to get kids interested in a topic, just tell them something gross or disturbing about it. My own research paper experience confirms this: the topics that were usually selected first were those having to do with serial killers and unsolved murders/crimes. Guys Lit Wire's review today touched on this, too. Are your punks just as drawn to the darker side of life as mine have been? Any thoughts on why that might be?