Tensions in Teaching Adolescence/ts: Analyzing Resistances In A Young Adult Literature Course


  • Sophia Tatiana Sarigianides


Identifying English Education courses focused on young adult literature as apposite sites for exploring teacher conceptions of youth and the texts aimed for youths’ consumptions, this article addresses the multiple sources of tension—and pedagogical potential—of teaching a young adult literature course centrally framed around controversial discourses of adolescence. Reflecting on six years of teaching the course at two different institutions with a strong focus on critical perspectives of youth, the article examines why students in the class would understandably strain against this curriculum, as well as what it might mean for secondary literacy curricula and secondary students if teacher educators and secondary teachers take up these pedagogical risks and sources of resistance in efforts to interrupt dominant and stereotypical discourses about youth.