Taking the Reader "Someplace a Little Different": Russian-ness in Young Adult Fantasy
Young adult literature (YAL) has been growing in popularity since its conception in the mid-twentieth century. While young adult novels dominate the commercial literary market, academic scholarship on YAL is still limited. In recent years, there has been more and more demand for YAL that is diverse in its nature.This thesis aims to explore this emergence of Russia as a setting and thematic background in young adult fantasy. To examine the role of Russian-ness in these young adult fantasy novels, Leerssen and Beller’s theory of imagology will be employed. The novels that will be analysed in this thesis are Shadow and Bone (2012) by Leigh Bardugo, The Bear and the Nightingale (2017) by Katherine Arden, The Crown’s Game (2016) by Evelyn Skye and Wicked Saints (2019) by Emily A. Duncan. A concept closely connected to imagology and national stereotype in this research is authenticity.
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