This volume brings together diverse, cross-disciplinary scholarly voices to examine gender construction in children's and young adult literature. It complements and updates the scholarship in the field by creating a rich, cohesive examination of core questions around gender and sexuality in classic and contemporary texts. By providing an expansive treatment of gender and sexuality across genres, eras, and national literature, the collection explores how readers encounter unorthodox as well as traditional notions of gender. It begins with essays exploring how children's and YA literature construct communities formed by gender, ethnicity, sexuality, and in face-to-face and virtual spaces. Section II's central focus is how gendered identities are formed, unpacking how texts for young readers ranging from Amish youth periodicals to the blockbuster Divergent series trace, reproduce, and shape gendered identity socialization. In section III, the essential literary function of translating trauma into narrative is addressed in classics like Anne of Green Gables and Pollyanna, as well as more recent works. Section IV's focus on sexuality and romance encompasses fiction and nonfiction works, examining how children's and young adult literature can serve as a regressive, progressive, and transgressive site for construction meaning about sex and romance. Last, Section IV offers new readings of paratextual features in literature for children -- from the classic tale of Cinderella to contemporary illustrated novels. The key achievement of this volume is providing an updated range of multidisciplinary and methodologically diverse analyses of critically and commercially successful texts, contributing to the scholarship on children's and YA literature; gender, sexuality, and women's studies; and a range of other disciplines.
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