“The Expectations that We Be Educators”: The view of Australian Authors Young Adult Fiction on their OwnVoices Novels as “Windows” for Learning about Marginalized Experiences”

Young Adult Library Services Association
Publication Type:
Journal Article
The Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults, 2020, 11 (1), pp. ? - ? (26)
Issue Date:
Full metadata record
This paper discusses empirical research conducted in 2016 with seven Australian authors of OwnVoices young adult fiction who publicly identified as Indigenous Australian, a Person of Colour, or a member of Queer or Disabled communities. Interview data was analyzed using Critical Discourse Analysis to understand authors’ professional journeys as publicly-identifying marginalized creators within the Australian publishing industry and wider literary community. The study found that all seven authors directly or indirectly invoked the concept of education or learning through their books, with their books functioning as a ‘window’ to readers from communities different to their own, per Bishop’s 1990 metaphor. Five authors positively acknowledged this educational potential, while two did from a negative perspective. This research contributes to our understanding of the additional pressures and expectations placed on authors from marginalized communities, while inserting the voices of Australian authors into broader discussions about equity in children’s and young adult fiction.
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