Diversity and Inclusivity as Core Values: Understanding the Importance of the Popular Discourse to Literary Prizes
Voorn, I.S. van der
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This MA thesis focused on the disengagement between popular discourse and literary prizes. It argued for the importance of popular discourse to literary prizes, answering the question: how can the disconnect regarding diversity and inclusivity that arises between popular discourse and literary prizes be resolved? It has done so by analysing three prizewinning works whose victories received a lot of criticism from the popular discourse: Bernardine Evaristo’s Girl, Woman, Other, Margaret Atwood’s The Testaments and J.K. Rowling’s “J.K. Rowling Writes about Her Reasons for Speaking out on Sex and Gender Issues”. First the importance of popular discourse to literary prizes is established. Second, it is demonstrated that the existing disconnect relates to the dialogue around diversity and inclusivity. Lastly, the thesis demonstrates the way popular discourse’s critique shows in the literary work itself. It has concluded that the interconnection between popular discourse and literary prizes creates a need to assess an author’s ideology alongside their text. This ideology can be analysed by looking at the author’s discourse.