Dig Out Your Gays: Death and Subversion in Two Queer Young Adult Novels
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This bachelor thesis analyses the subversion of the “Bury Your Gays” trope as proposed by TVtropes and its functions as social commentary in the Young Adult novels Song of Achilles (Madeline Miller, 2011) and More Than This (Patrick Ness, 2013). It does so by connecting the trope to narrative theory and gender criticism, with a focus on sexual culture, heteronormativity and related political strategies. Both novels subvert the trope, but do so on a different level and with a different approach. More Than This strongly subverts the trope on a narrative level by revaluating the link between queer identity, trauma and death. Song of Achilles subverts this trope only in a minor way on a narratological level, but exhibits strong subversion on an intertextual level in its nature as reinterpretation of the Iliad. By doing so, both novels enable modes of possibility and offer perspectives beyond the heterosexual life narrative.