June 29, 2011

The Atlantic YA Series

A certain set of WSJ pieces (no I'm not linking) has the YA community up in arms, as well it should. The research is shoddy and the argument is ill-constructed. Perhaps the WSJ missed Harvard Magazine article about Lauren Mechling:

Lauren Mechling ’99 spent a week in the “young adult” corner of a New York City Barnes & Noble. She hadn’t been in that section in a decade, by her estimate, and what she found surprised her. The moralizing tone of the books she remembered from her own teenage reading was gone. “It seemed like the books were really being written for teenagers, not for their parents to buy them,” she says. “There was something kind of ‘Wild-West’-y about it.”

At the beginning of this month, The Atlantic published a four article series about YA today.

From Alyssa Rosenberg's first article:

Young adult fiction offers a promise to all of us that there is no suffering that's not worth it, no agony that goes unrewarded down the line. If you're a teenager, those promises might be false, but they're a temporary balm. And if you're an adult, too old to believe that the balance of life comes out even, you can suspend your disappointments as long as you're immersed in a story that promises something different.

Now that's someone who actually knows something about YA. Let's pass it on.


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