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YA Heroines: Scarlett O’Hara or Scared O’Themselves?

In the wake of so many YA books with heroines at the center of the story, there seems to be a frustrating trend emerging. Some YA authors write about girls who are not just uncertain about their roles in society and struggling with their identities but girls who seem almost debilitated by a fog of self-questioning and even gullibility. Adolescence is a confusing time most would admit but why does this confusion seem to equal an inability to see obvious answers to the quandaries these young women face? In making heroines believable in their adolescence, have authors gone overboard in making these young ladies too simple-minded, self-involved and scared? Weigh-in and tell Book Bridges what you think about YA heroines and their role in teaching our young people how girls really perceive their world and the options open to them. YA authors and readers alike are encouraged to vote and leave comments about how and why female characters are shaped in certain ways.

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One thought on “YA Heroines: Scarlett O’Hara or Scared O’Themselves?

  1. I think this is a belief of YA authors–that readers need to feel superior to or more (self-) aware than the heroine to feel connected to a story or character. They forget, I imagine, that we need to see our strengths in fictional characters, too. This is especially true of adolescents and, particularly, of adolescent girls. I always had such a hard time knowing what I was good at, what my strengths were, where my power lay; I would have loved to see some of myself in a heroine who was badass in a way I found possible or believable for me.

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