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Are Modern YA Books Harmful to Teens?

Last week an article in the Wall Street Journal declared that "Contemporary fiction for teens is rife with explicit abuse, violence and depravity. Why is this considered a good idea?" http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303657404576357622592697038.html
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It was quickly followed by outrage by some of those YA authors who have managed to save lives with their "works of depravity."

Since they can speak about this issue better than I, below are links to their responses. I happen to agree with them, but you can let me know what you think.

http://madwomanintheforest.com/stuck-between-rage-and-compassion/

http://www.npr.org/blogs/monkeysee/2011/06/06/137005354/seeing-teenagers-as-we-wish-they-were-the-debate-over-ya-fiction?sc=ipad&f=1008

The bottom line is that the only way we can shield our teens from the real world is to remove all technology, media, school bus rides and any outside interaction with peers. And that assumes their home life is supportive and without dysfunction. Sadly, that's not often the case. I agree with Laurie Halse Anderson that books can save teen lives. Unless the adults in their lives have a better plan.

Liza N. Burby
Liza is an award-winning journalist for some of the top publications in the country, a magazine editor, parenting speaker, children's book author and a motivational speaker/expert on getting your work published.
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