E405 – Adolescents’ Literature
Description: The catalogue description suggests that Adolescents’ Literature is a “survey of literature for adolescents, emphasizing the development of critical ability, appreciation, and taste.” The course includes basically three kinds of literature: those books written specifically for adolescents, those books that describe the adolescent experience, and those books that are read by adolescents although not written expressly for them. We use the term “adolescent” to refer generally to those students in grades 7-12.
The course is designed with teachers as its primary, though not exclusive, audience. Since it is an attempt to expose students to a wide variety of literature and to help them provide for the needs of adolescents, the major thrust of the course is a discussion of the literature described above with an emphasis on adolescent appeal and literary quality. To aid junior and senior high school students in developing critical ability, students in Adolescents’ Literature will also focus on values, stereotypes, etc., as they are presented in given novels. The class format also includes discussion of the adolescents themselves and their place in society, censorship, sub-literature, pre-adolescent literature, magazines, and minority literature. A number of contemporary novels, short stories and poetry are used as texts. Students will have the opportunity to read upwards of 5,000 pages of adolescents’ literature.