1. On page 79, Daniels cites the part of Terry Davis’ article “On the Question of Integrating Young Adult Literature Into The Mainstream” in which he states how “‘publishers need to create a specific category for books that can be read by adults and youth, books that have both literary and teaching merit.’” In response to this quote, Daniels mentions that “while publishers may not be willing to start yet another marketing category, critics can, through individual analyses of works, reveal exactly which titles belong in this area [i.e., the young adult literature genre], just as they do with other ‘adult’ contemporary works.” (79) Which side would you say that you’re on? Do you think that creating another category of literature just to make young adult literature easier for critics to identify or do you believe that critics should just put more effort into examining what makes young adult literature so unique? Explain why you chose the position that you did.
2. When Daniels gives the idea that young adult literature writing has “significance to all of us, regardless of what age category we fall into, because they speak to the human condition”, do you believe that she’s trying to say that young adult literature applies to all age groups because of how relatable they are or do you have a different interpretation and if so, what (79)?
3. Daniels, on pages 80-81, discusses how various young adult books can be “explored theoretically” thanks to any underlying themes or social and cultural ideologies hidden within them. In addition to the books Daniels mentioned such as The Goats and Holes, what other young adult books have you read in the past that you believed contained underlying themes or social and cultural ideologies within them and what particular themes or social and cultural ideologies were they?
4. What other methods of legitimizing young adult literature do you have in addition to the ones mentioned by Daniels and what about these methods do you believe make them so efficient?
Quote 1: “What would help in this regard would be not only for critics to recognize the difference between the genres, but to simply acknowledge that regardless of genre both children’s and YA works are literature.” (Daniels, 78)
Quote 2: “For example, the genre of YA literature can be examined as a way to analyze the underlying class ideology of a work, without the text being specifically ‘about’ class conflict.” (Daniels, 80)
The first quote I chose from Daniels’ article was interesting to me since it gave me the idea that even though the purpose of genre is to understand what kind of book I’m about to read, I shouldn’t put children’s literature and young adult literature in a genre hierarchy to determine how significant each one is compared to the other. The works categorized within these two genres are still works of literature that writers put a lot of effort into and with that in mind, they should be viewed with equal significance despite the fact that the works categorized within these two genres are technically intended for younger audiences. I also found the second quote I chose interesting due to how it taught me that works of young adult literature can have certain undertones hidden within them while the texts themselves can still tell the stories that they want to tell. In hearing this, I was amazed to discover just how dedicated the works of young adult literature can be when using the “show-don’t-tell” method of storytelling, especially since I personally believe that’s the best way to tell a story.