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Title: Re-mapping adolescence : psychoanalysis and narrative in young adult fiction
Author: Al Jomaa, Mervat
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2010
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The start of the new millennium has witnessed literary interest in young adult fiction and a prominent rise in its popularity. My research focuses on the dynamics of adolescent narrative and the representations of the adolescent subject in a number of contemporary mainstream young adult novels with the aim of understanding adolescence as an inscribed literary identity. I take, as my starting point, Julia Kristeva's definition of adolescence as an open, non-biologically limited, psychic structure. This notion, when applied to young adult fiction, suggests that the texts work to construct psychologically-open implied readers, which in diverse ways echo and affirm the desires and expectations of real readers. While the introduction surveys contemporary critical currents in children and young adult fiction and places my research into context, each of the subsequent chapters examines one or more literary works by a single author. The main literary works discussed in this study include novels by Meg Rosoff, Geraldine McCaughrean, David Almond, J K Rowling and Philip Pullman respectively; all of whom have widely appealed to readers of different age groups. In my analysis I use insights from psychoanalytic and psycho-linguistic theories mainly by Kristeva, Freud, Lacan and Winnicott, and where necessary my argument is supported by narrative analysis, reading theories and feminist criticism. By engaging with critical and psychoanalytical readings of paradigmatic young adult texts, I aim to explicate the particularities of representing the adolescent economy and the distinctive nature of contemporary young adult fiction in ways through which it opens its boundaries to adult readers. On another level, my objective is to elucidate the growing complexities and subtleties of contemporary children's literature in general and young adult fiction in particular.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available