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Beyond the BlockbustersThemes and Trends in Contemporary Young Adult Fiction$
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Rebekah Fitzsimmons and Casey Alane Wilson

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781496827135

Published to University Press of Mississippi: January 2021

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496827135.001.0001

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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: 21 September 2021

Who Are These Books Really For? Police-Violence YA, Black Youth Activism, and the Implied White Audience

Who Are These Books Really For? Police-Violence YA, Black Youth Activism, and the Implied White Audience

Chapter:
(p.63) 5 Who Are These Books Really For? Police-Violence YA, Black Youth Activism, and the Implied White Audience
Source:
Beyond the Blockbusters
Author(s):

Kaylee Jangula Mootz

Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781496827135.003.0005

This chapter discusses trends in the genre of police-violence YA, specifically: embracing Black identity; confronting white privilege; focusing on police violence and structural racism; urging readers to speak out; and remembering victims of violence. While recognizing the importance of police-violence YA to anti-racist literature for youth, this chapter is critical of the genre’s tendency to pander to a white readership, arguing that these texts foreclose Black youth experience in favor of educating white readers about racism. Despite this criticism, this chapter promotes police-violence YA as a necessary addition to the field of young adult literature for its propensity to inspire youth activism and empower young Black readers.

Keywords:   Police Violence, Racism, White Privilege, Black identity, Activism

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