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Engaging "Apolitical" Adolescents: Analyzing the Popularity and Educational Potential of Dystopian Literature Post-9/11

Engaging "Apolitical" Adolescents: Analyzing the Popularity and Educational Potential of... Abstract: Although dystopian novels have been prevalent under the young adult banner for decades, their abundance and popularity post-9/11 is noteworthy. The 21 st century has found academics and laypersons alike discussing the supposed political apathy of young adults and teenagers of the Millennial Generation. However, despite this common complaint—and contrary to ample research that indicates that this age group has traditionally been uninterested in global politics—the reading preferences of this generation indicate that this label of "apolitical" may not be as fitting as some believe. In fact, the popularity of young adult dystopian literature, which is ripe with these political themes, suggests that this group is actually quite interested in these topics, although they often turn to the safe confines of fiction to wrestle with them. This article explores the potential educational uses of these young adult dystopias and argues that reading these texts may be a small step in the direction of engaging students in social justice issues and, perhaps, sparking more overt political action. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The High School Journal University of North Carolina Press

Engaging "Apolitical" Adolescents: Analyzing the Popularity and Educational Potential of Dystopian Literature Post-9/11

The High School Journal , Volume 97 (1) – Nov 14, 2013

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © The University of North Carolina Press.
ISSN
1534-5157
Publisher site
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Abstract

Abstract: Although dystopian novels have been prevalent under the young adult banner for decades, their abundance and popularity post-9/11 is noteworthy. The 21 st century has found academics and laypersons alike discussing the supposed political apathy of young adults and teenagers of the Millennial Generation. However, despite this common complaint—and contrary to ample research that indicates that this age group has traditionally been uninterested in global politics—the reading preferences of this generation indicate that this label of "apolitical" may not be as fitting as some believe. In fact, the popularity of young adult dystopian literature, which is ripe with these political themes, suggests that this group is actually quite interested in these topics, although they often turn to the safe confines of fiction to wrestle with them. This article explores the potential educational uses of these young adult dystopias and argues that reading these texts may be a small step in the direction of engaging students in social justice issues and, perhaps, sparking more overt political action.

Journal

The High School JournalUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Nov 14, 2013

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