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The Image of homosexuality in recent novels for young adults Brautigam, Christel Katharina Ireme

Abstract

This study examines the image of homosexuality in novels published for young adults between 1998 and 2003, the extent to which authors have left behind two dimensional-one issue characters in novels dealing with homosexuality, and whether societal stereotypes of homosexuality are still perpetuated in young adult fiction. Twenty-six books that met the sampling criteria were selected and analysed using a content analysis approach. The findings show that the image of homosexuality in young adult fiction is more positive in this sample than in earlier books on this topic. The majority of books centre around the issue of homosexuality, but the characters are better developed and more well rounded, with issues other than their sexuality to cope with. Stereotypes regarding homosexuality are mostly refuted with the exception of some, such as retribution for being homosexual or the concept that homosexuality is a phase.

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