Calls for Manuscript Submissions

Calls for Manuscript Submissions

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Dollars and Sense?: Economic (In)Equities in YAL

Volume 45: Issue 3 (Summer 2018)

 Submissions due: November 1, 2017

Some might agree with Billy Idol: “It doesn’t matter about money; having it, not having it. Or having clothes, or not having them. You’re still left alone with yourself in the end.” Others, like Franklin D. Roosevelt, might subscribe to the belief that “Happiness is not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort.” These words, however, reflect the voices of those with money, those who have the privilege of deciding that the money they possess isn’t all that it’s worth. We can’t shake the steady voice of Nelson Mandela who advises us to remember that “Money won’t create success, [but] the freedom to make it will.” When it comes to money, our local and global realities are complicated. We talk of the top 1%, those in positions of power by virtue of their hefty investment portfolios. We learn of the vastly different living wage earned by people around the world. We hear of families in our own communities without homes, of jobs lost, of educational opportunities denied, of institutional oppression that limits access and mobility.

For this issue, we invite contributors to consider the complexities of economics and how they are taken up in young adult literature. How do authors represent class systems in the settings they create? How often is race conflated with socioeconomic status? What are the implications of such representations for young adult readers? How can we support their critical reading and understanding of wealth and poverty and their role in politics and policies, in literature and life? Do those with financial equity benefit inequitably? Are they “untouchable, immune to life’s troubles” (Maggie Stiefvater, The Dream Thieves, p. 66)? Is it true that all young people have a chance, that “Someday an opportunity will come. Think about Harry Potter. His life is terrible, but then a letter arrives, he gets on a train, and everything is different for him afterward. Better. Magical” (Matthew Quick, Boy 21, p. 73)? Can we find truth in the advice to “Take care not to listen to anyone who tells you what you can and can’t be in life” (Meg Medina, The Girl Who Could Silence the Wind, p. 79)? Do economic disparities leave us in despair?

As always, we also welcome submissions focused on any aspect of young adult literature not directly connected to this theme. All submissions may be sent to thealanreview@gmail.com. Please see the ALAN website (http://www.alan-ya.org/page/alan-review-author-guidelines) for submission guidelines.


“All” in the Family: Conceptions of Kinship in Young Adult Literature

Volume 45: Issue 2 (Winter 2018)

 Submissions due: July 1, 2017

The idea of family is complicated by the reality of life. While some may envision family as consisting of those to whom we are related by blood, others might hold a more inclusive definition. Family might be associated with home and safety and tradition and love or connected to feelings of betrayal and loss and loneliness and anger. Although our unique experiences with family might conjure differing definitions and perceptions along the continuum, we all likely have some type of emotional response to the concept.

We wonder how YA literature might influence how young people make sense of their own families. How is family perceived and depicted—conventionally? contemporarily? What roles do parents and guardians, extended family members, siblings, neighbors, teachers, caregivers, etc. play in defining family? Is it true that “Everyone plays a purpose, even fathers who lie to you or leave you behind” (Silvera, p. 84)? We are curious, too, as to how YA titles might help readers consider the moral obligation to stand by family. Is the family bond immutable, or can/should we cut ties and under what circumstances? Do we agree that “[N]o matter what, we’re still family, even if we don’t want to be” (Quintero, p. 168)? As educators, we want to know how you have reached out to families to foster young people’s reading and engagement with stories. How and why have you valued and celebrated the funds of knowledge and lived experiences of those in our students’ families?

As always, we also welcome submissions focused on any aspect of young adult literature not directly connected to this theme. All submissions may be sent to thealanreview@gmail.com. Please see the ALAN website (http://www.alan-ya.org/page/alan-review-author-guidelines) for submission guidelines.