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Reading in the DarkHorror in Children's Literature and Culture$
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Jessica R. McCort

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781496806444

Published to University Press of Mississippi: May 2018

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496806444.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM Mississippi SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mississippi.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Mississippi, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSSO for personal use.date: 27 September 2021

Get It Together

Get It Together

Anxieties of Collective Responsibility in Contemporary Young Adult Horror Novels

Chapter:
(p.165) Get It Together
Source:
Reading in the Dark
Author(s):

Nick Levey

Holly Harper

Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781496806444.003.0007

This essay begins fittingly with the line “If there’s one thing you can depend upon during the zombie apocalypse, it’s that you won’t have to face it alone.” In this essay, Levey and Harper examine the importance of group dynamics in contemporary teen novels that concentrate on surviving zombie invasions. Focusing on two recently published horror novels popular among teens, Charlie Higson’s The Enemy and Michael Grant’s Gone, Levey and Harper examine the “considerations of group consciousness and democratic dynamics” in the texts, noting that such attention to the group is a departure from previous teen novels that had focused more on negotiations of individual identity (this also marks a difference from the novels McCort examines, suggesting the different approach toward identity taken by those writing for older adolescents). For Levey and Harper, the importance of these particular novels and their treatment of the individual in relation to the group is twofold: they ask the characters therein to work through personal issues that are detrimental to the survival of the group and they call for social re-evaluation. In the worlds of The Enemy and Gone, young adult readers experience a close encounter with monstrous humanity, one that allows them to vicariously experience how others deal with threats external to their circles, as well as the threats that lie within themselves and their own peer groups.

Keywords:   Groups, Agency, Horror, Identity, Young-Adult Fiction, Adolescence

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