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Rebellion and resistance: South African young adult dystopian fiction

When: Thursday, 25 October 2018 - Thursday, 25 October 2018
Where: Braamfontein Campus East
Senate Room, 2nd floor, Solomon Mahlangu House
Start time:18:00

Judith Inggs, Professor of Translation at Wits University, will deliver her inaugural lecture.

Dystopian fiction for young adults in South Africa has increased in both quality and quantity in recent years, and is able to hold its own against globally celebrated trilogies such as Suzanne Collins’s Hunger Games or Veronica Roth’s Divergent. While young adult literature often reflects changes taking place in society as the protagonists negotiate a sense of identity and position of power within the institutions of their society, in dystopian literature the young protagonists take a leading role in opposing and subverting the totalitarian societies that have emerged. This lecture highlights recent works by South African authors and seeks to situate them in both a local and global political and historical perspective. The focus is on the portrayal of female protagonists and questions whether writers are promoting the active agency of young women as empowered citizens or whether they are inadvertently reinforcing the traditional role of females as nurturers, ultimately dependent on their male counterparts.

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