chapter  4
14 Pages

Schooling and Education of Young Adult Characters

WithR. Joseph Rodríguez

The landmark US Supreme Court case Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka named segregation unconstitutional and ordered an end to segregation with "all deliberate speed" across the country. This chapter presents selected young adult (YA) literary texts and author conversations to demonstrate how schooling and education evolve for those seeking to gain knowledge and become caring, humane, and participatory citizens in a democracy. For instance, Garcia McCall's emphasis on the hardiness of the mesquite tree in Under the Mesquite in the driest, harshest environments resonates with characters she introduces in her first novel, while the metamorphosis of the butterfly, or mariposa, serves magical purposes in the odyssey of hardships endured by five sisters in her second novel. McCall's second novel Summer of the Mariposas includes the odyssey of the five Garza sisters who face danger as well as fantastic and epic trials in the borderlands.