Monday, July 26, 2010

Boys as Props

In Young Adult books, the trend now is for guys to be the backdrop characters for our empowered girl leads. Fantasy Fodder for our girl main characters. I tend to agree. In trying to right the sexist wrongs, authors of YA can (IMHO) share the blame for creating boy stereotypes.

Disclaimer: my protagonist is a 17-yr-old guy.

As Hannah Moskowitz author of Break, we've sanitized them and stripped boys of substance. "Girls can do it too" became "only a girl can do it".
She observes that guys who read MGrade books showing boys all aspects of boyness SKIP Young Adult section and head straight for Adult Epic Fantasy.

Male POV books are needed. Real guys that are free of gender stereotypes, 3D, and relate-able. Writers, take note.

Publishers: put covers that boys will not be embarrassed to read in study hall. Buy books with male leads who are fleshed out, interesting,anti-stereotypes.

Like Mine. :)

1 comment:

  1. I think this is a real problem. When I taught in middle school, I was hard-pressed to find books with strong male protagonists such as those in The Cay, Freak the Mighty, Tangerine.

    Can't wait to read your book!