Literature for Young Adults

L391 — Fall 2021

Rebekah Sheldon
Days and Times
9:25a - 10:40a MW (3 CR)
Course Description

Topic: Literature for Adolescents 

What is it about teens and the end of the world? Teen dystopias and apocalypses such as Hunger Games, Divergent, and Uglies have dominated 21st century Young Adult Literature and attracted both youth and adult markets. While teen dystopias are a recent phenomenon, however, the teen has been the subject of adult anxiety since its origin in the mid-20th century. The images of the high school dropout, the teen parent, and the juvenile delinquent have circulated widely across American culture in the form of advice manuals, talks shows, classroom lessons, teen exploitation films, tell-all novels, celebrity magazines, and scared-straight programs. In this class, we will look at the 20th century creation and transformation of the teen as an American figure from the 1950s to the present as a way to understand the emergence of YA dystopian and apocalyptic literature in the past two decades. And we will try to figure out why the teen seems like such a fit figure for apocalypse and apocalypse such eager fare for teen readers.

Interested in this course?

The full details of this course are available on the Office of the Registrar website.

See complete course details