Normativity in Translated Young Adult Literature
MetadataShow full item record
Normativity refers to the social force enabling social norms and deciding what behaviour and gender identities are ‘normal’. Through literature that features queer discourses, a counter-story is provided that can subvert such normative standards. Readers can be shown that sexualities and identities perceived as ‘abnormal’ are as valid as those labelled normative. Such counter-stories are especially important for young adults who struggle with their sexual and gender identity. They need to have literature they can relate to since this enables them to think more critically about their emotions and remind them they are not alone in their feelings. Through initiatives such as de Diversity & Inclusivity Code, Dutch cultural institutes attempt to ensure they represent the broad diversity of Dutch society. However, while the availability of queer young adult literature (YAL) has seen an increase in the global literary market, this thesis discovered there is still much to gain in the diversification of the Dutch literary field aimed at queer teenagers. The data indicated that the overall queer representation in Dutch YAL published in 2021 corresponds to the average of queer teenagers in the Netherlands. However, a closer look at these statistics showed that many sexualities and identities remain underrepresented or not represented at all. Additionally, the close readings revealed that heteronormativity is challenged in queer YAL, but cisnormativity remains present and largely untouched.