Are fictional teenagers are TOO smart?Posted: March 22, 2013 Filed under: Me | Tags: A Visit from the Goon Squad, Jennifer Egan, Tennyson, texting, The Elegance of the Hedgehog, Twilight, Wuthering Heights, young adult books 2 Comments
“Seriously. Like, seriously? Whateves”
This is how I hear normal teenagers talking but when I pick up a Young Adult book (and oh how I love them), I’m smacked with fictional teenage characters discussing classical literature and reciting poetry?!
So, are the authors of these books dreaming that the next generation is actually of sound mind and we can all have hope that these millennials and aughts will fair well in our warmer but uncertain global future?
Or, are teenagers truly embracing the “nerd-chic” trend beyond clothing?
I can’t answer these questions, I’m generation X and therefore don’t care enough to put in any effort to solve these complexities.
I can tell you the latest YA book I’m reading had me pulling out a vocabulary list though. Sure, the amount of unknown words was nothing compared to when I read “The Elegance of the Hedgehog”, with that freakishly deep 12 year old, but there were a handful. And while I’m ranting, what’s with author’s adding other languages in their books with no subtitles, oh mon dieu, it’s annoying. Almost as annoying as when authors use text-speak, OMG Jennifer Egan, I”m talking to you, that chapter in “A Visit from the Goon Squad” nearly killed me.
Where was I?
Oh yes, young adult books, I sort of credit “Twilight” for this rise of fictional teenage intelligence. Their talk of “Wuthering Heights”, Jane Austen books, reading Tennyson to their immortal child……it all seemed so normal, even cool.
In conclusion, to answer my original question, I firmly support the higher IQs of fictional teenagers, if nothing else it usually makes for a great story.
I think that Feed does a great demonstration of how people (teenagers especially) would speak in the future. Some books are entertaining, but when you have to start pulling out the thesaurus to understand a ten year old, that’s when it gets a bit ridiculous.
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