Empire and Adolescence: Whiteness and Gendered Citizenship in American Young Adult Literature, 1904-1951

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dc.contributor.author Fasteland, MicKenzie
dc.date.accessioned 2017-01-26T22:18:42Z
dc.date.available NO_RESTRICTION
dc.date.available 2017-01-26T22:18:42Z
dc.date.issued 2016
dc.date.submitted 2016
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2027.42/135806
dc.description.abstract his dissertation examines how American adolescent literary book lists and adolescent literature normalized White Anglo-Saxon Protestant subjectivities in the first half of the twentieth century. Figures like child study psychologist G. Stanley Hall and librarian Anne Carroll Moore created a gendered and racialized reading practice for American teens that would construct a functioning imperialist citizenry whereas teen authors Mary MacLane and Maureen Daly provided contesting (and occasionally colluding) models of adolescent reading. The introduction argues that early discourses around adolescent reading practices must be contextualized against American imperialist and military action to better deconstruct racialized images of adolescent citizenry. The first chapter examines how Hall’s literary genre for teens, “ephebic literature,” provided a new cultural model of adolescent development that pulled together stories from Greek mythology, medieval legends, and Western biography to imagine a model of imperialist citizenship bounded by race and gender. The second chapter proposes a revised stance on Moore’s career that both recognizes her contributions to increasing dialogue between librarians and their adolescent patrons and calls attention her post-WWI recommendations for teens, which did not reflect the ethnic and racial diversity that marked the New York Public Library’s patrons but relied instead on Western European and American literature that marginalized nonwhite or immigrant characters. The third chapter juxtaposes two case studies, one historical and one fictional, of two white adolescent “New Women” whose obsessive reading was framed as dangerous to nationalist goals. The first re-reads Mary MacLane’s memoir as an adolescent expression of fandom, one that intertwined plotlines from girl’s bildungsroman with the tenants of lyric poetry to create queer futurities and communities; the second returns to Moore’s recommendations for girls to articulate how her condemnation of Fanny Kilbourne’s Betty Bell was bound up in white respectability politics. The fourth chapter reframes Maureen Daly’s extensive career writing to and for teens into a complicated performance of a commercialized WASP subjectivity that marginalized her own Irish-Catholic background during and after WWII. This dissertation calls for young adult literary studies to examine these historical developments to better contextualize current problems increasing diversity in young adult literature.
dc.language.iso en_US
dc.subject Young Adult Literature
dc.subject Children's Literature
dc.subject Critical Race Studies
dc.subject Women's and Gender Studies
dc.subject American Literature
dc.title Empire and Adolescence: Whiteness and Gendered Citizenship in American Young Adult Literature, 1904-1951
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.description.thesisdegreename PHD
dc.description.thesisdegreediscipline English and Women's Studies
dc.description.thesisdegreegrantor University of Michigan, Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies
dc.contributor.committeemember Tapia, Ruby C
dc.contributor.committeemember Kelley, Mary C
dc.contributor.committeemember Kuppers, Petra
dc.contributor.committeemember Miller, Joshua L
dc.subject.hlbsecondlevel Women's and Gender Studies
dc.subject.hlbtoplevel Humanities
dc.description.bitstreamurl http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/135806/1/mfastel_1.pdf
dc.owningcollname Dissertations and Theses (Ph.D. and Master's)
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