The Danger of Labeling and Dividing Literature

June 11, 2014

Twitter was ON FIRE last week over this article in Slate, written by Ruth Graham, titled “Against YA.”

YA stands for Young Adult, a literary genre where the main and often the supporting characters are between the ages of 12-18. Many well-respected and successful authors were furious about the piece, as were many librarians.

Hanna Hettinger’s articulate and exquisite response to the Slate post is worth the read, whether you read YA books or not. Hettinger reminds us of the dangers of labeling literature and dividing it into piles labeled “worthwhile” or “trash.” She also writes beautifully about writing as art, not as a science.

And if you’re interested in diving into the world of YA, this librarian recommends Every Day by David Levithan. It’s incredible!

Read Hettinger’s article here on her blog, Wine and Marble.


Casey O'Leary
Casey O’Leary is a writer and children’s librarian. She is passionate about reading and helping children find the “perfect book.” In 2012, she fulfilled a dream by completing her master’s degree in library science from Indiana University. Casey blogs at After the Closet and is a frequent contributor to Christian Feminism Today.