Project Title

Boys Like Me: Neurodivergence in the Young Adult Novel

Authors' Affiliations

Malikai Bass, Department of Human Services, College of Education, East Tennessee State University Dr. Scott Honeycutt, Department of Literature and Language, College of Arts and Sciences, East Tennesee State University

Location

Ballroom

Start Date

4-12-2019 9:00 AM

End Date

4-12-2019 2:30 PM

Poster Number

76

Faculty Sponsor’s Department

Literature and Language

Name of Project's Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Scott Honeycutt

Type

Poster: Competitive

Classification of First Author

Undergraduate Student

Project's Category

Language or Literature, Other Education

Abstract Text

Books shape our definition of the world; including, how we conceive , others, and, for young readers, even ourselves. Hitherto, for neurodivergent people , the lack of appropriate narrative representations in young adult literature disrupts this formative process. Previously, authors included neurodivergent characters only as stock characters possessing little definition aside from their disabilities and having minimal impacts on the plots and other characters within the novels. More recently, however, young adult novels featuring neurodivergent characters have developed into a popular subgenre, including stories of young people with atypical cognition, neurochemistry, or neurodevelopment such as Autism or Down Syndrome. Inspired by the emergence of the neurodiversity movement which seeks to define these variations as neutral and natural, this fiction increasingly provides representation to these previously neglected communities. This study explores the representation of neurodivergent characters within the young adult novels in contrast to the larger genre of young adult literature through the lens of neurodiversity.

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Apr 12th, 9:00 AM Apr 12th, 2:30 PM

Boys Like Me: Neurodivergence in the Young Adult Novel

Ballroom

Books shape our definition of the world; including, how we conceive , others, and, for young readers, even ourselves. Hitherto, for neurodivergent people , the lack of appropriate narrative representations in young adult literature disrupts this formative process. Previously, authors included neurodivergent characters only as stock characters possessing little definition aside from their disabilities and having minimal impacts on the plots and other characters within the novels. More recently, however, young adult novels featuring neurodivergent characters have developed into a popular subgenre, including stories of young people with atypical cognition, neurochemistry, or neurodevelopment such as Autism or Down Syndrome. Inspired by the emergence of the neurodiversity movement which seeks to define these variations as neutral and natural, this fiction increasingly provides representation to these previously neglected communities. This study explores the representation of neurodivergent characters within the young adult novels in contrast to the larger genre of young adult literature through the lens of neurodiversity.