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Religion and Spirituality in Young Adult Literature. Presented by: Rachel Johnson & Shayna Chasteen LIB 800 HCM Project/Presentation November 19, 2012. http:// www.talkshoe.com/talkshoe/web/Categories.jsp?categoryId =0&cmd=cat. Purpose.

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religion and spirituality in young adult literature

Religion and Spirituality in Young Adult Literature

Presented by: Rachel Johnson & ShaynaChasteen

LIB 800 HCM Project/Presentation

November 19, 2012

http://www.talkshoe.com/talkshoe/web/Categories.jsp?categoryId=0&cmd=cat

purpose
Purpose
  • Explore religion and spirituality in young adult literature through professional journal articles.
  • Discuss developmental issues and the audience related to religion and spirituality in young adult literature.
  • Show how religion and spirituality has changed over the decades.
  • Discuss the current issues of religion and spirituality in young adult literature.
  • Provide suggested reads related to religion and spirituality.
  • Expound on the topic by giving related websites/resources.
  • Discuss critical thinking questions as a class.
journal articles rachel
Journal Articles (Rachel)
  • Campbell P. Mainstreaming the last taboo. Horn Book Magazine[serial online]. May 1998;74(3):379. Available from: Academic Search Premier, Ipswich, MA. Accessed October 8, 2012.
  • Cart, M. (2009). Carte Blanche: The Last Taboo?. Booklist, 106(6), 32.
  • Mendt, K. L. Spiritual Themes in Young Adult Books. The Alan Review. Spring 1996. 23(3).
  • Winner, L. F. (2001). Nurturing Today's Teen Spirit. Publishers Weekly,248(11), 30.
journal articles shayna
Journal Articles (Shayna)
  • Campbell, P. (1994). The sand in the oyster. Horn Book Magazine, 70(5), 619-623.
  • Norton, N. & Simon, L. (2011). A mighty river: intersections of spiritualties and activism in children’s and young adult literature. Curriculum Inquiry,  293-318.
  • Sangwon, K. (2011). Adolescent spirituality and resilience: theory, research, and educational practices.  Psychology in the Schools,  48(7), 755-765.
  • Trousdale, A. (2005). Intersections of spirituality, religion. International Journal of Children’s   Spirituality,, 10(1), 61-79.
definition of terms
Definition of Terms
  • Spirituality- “is understood to be a capacity in human beings for wonderment, for experiencing or pondering what might lie beyond the visible, tangible aspects of reality; for interest in the nature and origin of things; and for considering how one is to relate to others, to oneself, and to the world about us” (Trousdale, 2005, p. 63).
  • Religion- The belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a God or gods.

http://www.med.navy.mil/sites/nmcsd/nccosc/serviceMembersV2/buildResilience/spiritualityItHelpsBuildResilience/Pages/default.aspx

developmental issues
Developmental Issues
  • According to research, most changes occur during adolescence than any other time in human development. These changes are not limited to physical growth. Students this age also experience mental and emotional growth as well (Sangwon, 2011).
  • Norton & Simon (2011) note within their research that during this stage of development students being to search for meaning in their lives and try to make sense of their place in the world.
  • Much of this curiosity is driven from the urge to be their own person. In other words, not driven by their guardians.
developmental issues1
Developmental Issues
  • For example, in the nonfiction book “World Religions 101: An Overview for Teens” Margaret O. Hyde and Emily G. Hyde (2009) discuss how teens are searching for spiritual meaning and that the most common path to spirituality is through religion.
  • Another example can be found in the fiction book, “Everything You Need to Survive the Apocalypse” where Lucas Klauss (2012) uses character, 16 year old Phillip, to illustrate a teens search for meaning in life and finding his place within the world.
audience young adult view
Audience/Young Adult View
  • In the article, “Roses are Red Taking a Leap of Faith”, Kay A. Smith interviews high school students about religion and spirituality. She asks some of the following questions:
  • Have you recently read a book that dealt with a religious theme? Would you like to read a book that dealt with the issues of religion, beliefs, morals, etc.? Why or why not? How comfortable would you be reading a book about all types of faith?
audience young adult view1
Audience/Young Adult View
  • The results: “surprising and fascinating” (Smith, 2009).
  • From the articles we have read we infer that religion and spirituality is not a popular theme for adolescents. One can infer that students want to search for spiritual meaning, but don’t exactly know where to go and the difference between religion and spirituality.

http://www.episcopalswfl.org/Youth%20and%20Young%20Adult/young-adult-ministry.html

through the decades
Through the Decades…
  • Spirituality began appearing in children’s books as early as the 15th century in the way of the Lord’s Prayer.
  • By the 19th century religion and spirituality were common in children's books and looked like this in a fiction book: ‘But the Bible tells us that God hates pride. “Everyone that is proud is an abomination tothe Lord …”; “pride goeth before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.” My greatdesire for you is that you may learn to rule your own spirit; that you may become meek and lowly in heart, patient and gentle like the Lord” (Trousdale, 2005, p. 61).

http://www.biblestudyforyou.com/articles/

through the decades1
Through the Decades…
  • In the late 20th century, the way religion and spirituality were presented in young adult literature began to change.
  • Religious values began being replaced with the inclusion of multicultural perspectives and of topics formerly considered taboo in books for children: divorce, drug and alcohol addiction, teenage pregnancy, death of a parent or friend, mental illness” (Trousdale, 2005, p. 63).
through the decades2
Through the Decades…
  • In current YA literature religion is most often avoided all together and replaced with spirituality. This approach is used to appeal to a wide variety and offer skeptical questions that lead to uncertain answers. In other words, most everything is open to personal connection/interpretation (Trousdale, 2005, p. 63).
  • After reading many articles and books, we have come to the conclusion that religion and spirituality has changed the way it is approached in young adult literature.
character development through the decades
Character Development Through the Decades

Religious characters before the 20th century

  • Often members of a stereotypical family (married mother/father, siblings) that went to church regularly and were portrayed as good moral people (Campbell, 1994).
  • Parents of the character, if applicable, were considerate and knew what was going on with their child, and offered guidance.

http://www.frasersoft.net/family.htm

character development through the decades1
Character Development Through the Decades

Current religious book characters:

  • Often portrayed as despicable
  • Intolerant of others religious views
  • Parents are often portrayed as gullible fanatics or unbelievers who hinder the child’s god-search
  • Campbell, P. (1994). The sand in the oyster. Horn Book Magazine, 70(5), 619-623.
current issues
Current Issues
  • When a character does search for faith how does it turn out? Often badly with a total loss of faith.
  • Religion by nature is a private matter.
  • What are the dangers in leaving out religion? The young reader will feel that they are the only one’s working through their religion.
  • What accounts for the religion void in YA literature? Publishers and writers risk cutting potential markets by offending someone.
current issues1
Current Issues
  • How can the lack of religious literature be interpreted by young adults? That the topic does not matter.
  • What is replacing God in YA literature? Guardian angels, aliens, visitors beyond the grave.
  • Fantasy is replacing spirituality.
  • If one truly wants to read a book about religion then the reader will most likely need to look for books published by a Christian publishing company.
suggested fiction reads

Suggested Fiction Reads

“Anna Dressed in Blood”

by Kendare Blake

“Island’s End”

by PadmaVenkatraman

“Half World”

by Hiromi Goto

anna dressed in blood
“Anna Dressed In Blood”

CasLowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.

Searching for a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas expects the usual: track, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he's never faced before

island s end
“Island’s End”

Uidobecoming her tribe's spiritual leader. Looming above many troubles are the recent visits of strangers from the mainland who have little regard for nature or the spirits, and tempt the tribe members with gifts, making them curious about modern life. Uido's little brother falls deathly ill, she must cross the ocean and seek their help. Having now seen so many new things, will Uido have the strength to believe in herself and the old ways?

half world
“Half World”

Melanie Tamaki is human but her parents aren’t. They are from Half World, a Limbo between our world and the afterlife.When her mother disappears, Melanie must follow her to Half World and neither of them may return alive.

suggested nonfiction reads
Suggested Nonfiction Reads
  • “World Religions 101: An Overview for Teens”

By: Margaret O. Hyde and Emily G. Hyde

  • “Gandhi:aManga Biography

By: KazukiEbine

  • “Religion and Spirituality in America: The Ultimate Teen Guide

By: Kathlyn Gay

world religions 101 an overview for teens
“World Religions 101: An Overview for Teens

Examines the concept of religions, how people around the world practice their religion, and how religion affects people's lives.

gandhi a manga biography
“Gandhi: a Manga Biography”

In Gandhi, the third volume in our exciting new manga biography series, created in conjunction with Emotional Content, KazukiEbine combines a gripping narrative with stunning illustrations to share Gandhi's inspiring and deeply human story with a whole new generation of readers.

religion and spirituality in america the ultimate teen guide
“Religion and Spiritualityin America: The Ultimate Teen Guide”

Religion and Spirituality in America: The Ultimate Teen Guide provides an introduction to some of the diverse religious practices, traditions, and expressions in the United States and focuses on how teenagers view their particular religious faith--or lack of it--what they believe, what conflicts they encounter, and how they relate to others whose religions differ from theirs.

websites resources
Websites/Resources
  • http://www.goodreads.com/
  • http://rachel2188.wordpress.com/
  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yooc38Zh8Kg&list=HL1352204187&feature=mh_lolz (Booktalk – Johnson)
  • http://spiritualityreads.wordpress.com/
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e3lCnrgwlcE
questions
Questions
  • Why do you infer that religion/spirituality is taboo in young adult literature?
  • What is your point of view about promoting books with religious and spiritual content in the library?
  • From your experience as a Librarian or classroom teacher, do spiritual/religious books get read or requested often?
references
References
  • http://www.talkshoe.com/talkshoe/web/Categories.jsp?categoryId=0&cmd=cat (religion and spirituality pic)
  • http://www.med.navy.mil/sites/nmcsd/nccosc/serviceMembersV2/buildResilience/spiritualityItHelpsBuildResilience/Pages/default.aspx (pic on slide 5)
  • Campbell P. Mainstreaming the last taboo. Horn Book Magazine[serial online]. May 1998;74(3):379. Available from: Academic Search Premier, Ipswich, MA. Accessed October 8, 2012.
  • Campbell, P. (1994). The sand in the oyster. Horn Book Magazine, 70(5), 619-623.
  • Cart, M. (2009). Carte Blanche: The Last Taboo?. Booklist, 106(6), 32.
  • Mendt, K. L. Spiritual Themes in Young Adult Books. The Alan Review. Spring 1996. 23(3). Winner, L. F. (2001). Nurturing Today's Teen Spirit. Publishers Weekly,248(11), 30.
references1
References
  • Norton, N. & Simon, L. (2011). A mighty river: intersections of spiritualties and activism in children’s and young adult literature. Curriculum Inquiry,  293-318.
  • Sangwon, K. (2011). Adolescent spirituality and resilience: theory, research, and educational practices.  Psychology in the Schools,  48(7), 755-765.
  • Smith, K. (2009). Roses are Red Taking a Leap of Faith. The Alan Review, 39 (2).
  • Trousdale, A. (2005). Intersections of spirituality, religion. International Journal of Children’s   Spirituality,, 10(1), 61-79.
  • Winner, L. F. (2001). Nurturing Today's Teen Spirit. Publishers Weekly,248(11), 30.