Representations of Disability in Young Adult Literature
Advance praise for Disabling Characters
“In Disabling Characters, Patricia A. Dunn brings together the fields of disability studies and young adult literature, in ways that push both in new and exciting directions. Her thoughtful analysis of YA texts, through a disability studies-influenced lens, will push scholars, teachers, and students to think about YA, indeed all cultural artifacts, in challenging ways. While reading, I found myself looking at books I’ve read many times in the past, in ways I had never before considered. The questions Dunn poses about her selected titles will make readers think not only about those particular books, but about how we treat all texts in our classrooms. How we, as a society, view people with disabilities/disabled people, and how society itself plays a role in disabling individuals, are issues that need to be examined. Dunn provides a clear, comprehensive way of doing just that.
This is a welcome and vital addition to the academic conversation, but an even more powerful addition to pedagogy. Theory and practice are woven together in expert fashion, with an eye toward how teachers and students can talk about texts and characters. I have long admired Dunn’s work, and this is the book that only she could have written. I see Disabling Characters opening up thoughtful, fruitful discussions about texts in classrooms at all levels. Dunn begins by positing that ‘the status quo is not acceptable,’ and then proceeds to change it in significant ways. I know I will be a better teacher...
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