No 081 (2007): Radicalism and Dystopia
Welcome to this issue of YA Hotline. We hope to introduce to an important theme for young adult readers: dystopia and political literature. When we were first exploring possible topics for this issue we were torn. We were interested in dystopia, political activism, radicalism and ideology. The bigger question was how to bring these related ideas together, as they do not fit into a single genre. In trying to tie dystopia and politics together, we realized the link: The teenage years are about defining who you are and what you stand for. Often during these years, teens distance themselves from the ideals that they received from their parents. They begin to explore the ethics and politics of the world around them. Hintz and Ostry mention that utopian and dystopian writings “may be a young person’s first encounter with texts that systematically explore collective social organization” (p.2). Although utopia and dystopia are both important in discussions of society, we felt that teens were more drawn to the dark feel of dystopia. We hope to present the non-fiction works in thisHotline as a bridge from dystopic literature into the real world.