Title

How the Big Screen wants you to be seen: Racism and Colorism in Young Adult Literature to Film and Television Adaptations

Presenter Information

Kynnadie BennettFollow

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

Secondary English Education

Minor

Spanish

2nd Student Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Debbie Bell; Warren Edminster

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

This is an exploration of stereotypical and racist portrayals of minorities, specifically African-American, Latinx, and Native American communities, in film and television in the past and how that has affected representation in film adaptations of young adult literature. Young adult literature is one of the highest-selling genres in literature, purchased by both young adults and actual adults. In recent years, young adult literature has been adapted in to film and television series and while representation has improved since the early years of the entertainment history, there are still problems in the industry: many of the stereotypes remain, some minorities lack representation, and characters of specific skin tones have been altered to fit a more mainstream accepted image. The past portrayals affected the way minorities viewed themselves and the current portrayals are continuing these same detrimental effects.

Keywords: Racism, Colorism, Stereotypes, Minstrelsy, Afro-Latinx, Young Adult Fiction, Adaptation

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Honors College Senior Theses

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How the Big Screen wants you to be seen: Racism and Colorism in Young Adult Literature to Film and Television Adaptations

This is an exploration of stereotypical and racist portrayals of minorities, specifically African-American, Latinx, and Native American communities, in film and television in the past and how that has affected representation in film adaptations of young adult literature. Young adult literature is one of the highest-selling genres in literature, purchased by both young adults and actual adults. In recent years, young adult literature has been adapted in to film and television series and while representation has improved since the early years of the entertainment history, there are still problems in the industry: many of the stereotypes remain, some minorities lack representation, and characters of specific skin tones have been altered to fit a more mainstream accepted image. The past portrayals affected the way minorities viewed themselves and the current portrayals are continuing these same detrimental effects.

Keywords: Racism, Colorism, Stereotypes, Minstrelsy, Afro-Latinx, Young Adult Fiction, Adaptation