Abstract

By examining critical studies of the dystopian genre from Gregory Claeys, Fátima Vieira, and Keith Booker as well as the studies of young adult dystopian novels from Roberta Trites, Kenneth Donnelson, and Sean Connors, I argue that young adult literature (YAL) has literary merit and is worth studying. This literariness stems from a novel's ability to explore complex themes like religion, sacrifice, and societal contracts. I introduce and analyze a subgenre of YA dystopian literature, which I classify as the medical dystopia, a genre that is uniquely positioned to explore the complex moral questions that surround advancing medical technologies and their impact on society. To demonstrate how YAL can deal with the complex ideas inherent to themedical dystopian genre, I analyze Neal Shusterman's Unwind and Nancy Farmer's The House of the Scorpion. The analysis concludes that novels like these do not lack substance and have literary value due to their ability to invite young adults to view the darkness that exists within society from a position of safety and light.

Degree

MA

College and Department

Humanities; English

Rights

http://lib.byu.edu/about/copyright/

Date Submitted

2019-06-01

Document Type

Thesis

Keywords

Adolescents, Young Adult Literature, Dystopia, Unwind, The House of the Scorpion

Language

english

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