LIT224 Literature for Teens and Young Adults (8)

Today, the teenager seems like a natural category in the stages of life. However, the word teenager  and the idea of a person who is neither a child nor an adult  didnt exist until the 1950s. Similarly, the young adult fiction market segment is a very recent invention, with texts specifically aimed at 12 to 18 year olds only emerging in the 1970s and 80s. This subject traces the invention and representation of teenagers from the early twentieth century to today. We will focus on fictional and non-fictional texts (including novels, poems, plays, graphic novels, and informative texts) aimed at school years 7 to 10. We will work towards an understanding of the aesthetic pleasure of these texts, and what they tell us about the ambitions and fears of the societies that produced them. Finally, we will discuss trends and issues in contemporary teen ficton.


Session 2 (60)
Wagga Wagga Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: LIT224. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to demonstrate a broad knowledge of literature aimed at teenagers and young adults from the early twentieth century to today;
  • be able to closely read and interpret literature for young adults, and explain the aesthetic pleasure they may bring to their audiences;
  • be able to critically analyse literature for young adults, and make inferences about the societies and cultures that produced them; and
  • be able to discuss trends and issues in contemporary teen fiction.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Introduction, definitions of young adult literature
  • Before Young Adult Literature: stories of adventure and growing up
  • The invention of the teenager
  • Social realism
  • Australian fiction for young adults
  • Contemporary realism
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people and multicultural representation
  • Return to genres: utopia and dystopia
  • The graphic novel
  • Non-fiction
  • Multimedia forms
  • Trends and issues in young adult literature

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of LIT224 in Session 2 2020. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
essay plan
Reflective journal

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2021. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.