Pulling the Rug Out From Under (Neuro)Divergence in the Divergent Universe

Alyssa Hillary Zisk

Abstract


Veronica Roth’s Divergent series explicitly portrays neurological diversity, along with questions of identity, family, class, choice, values, and power. It is often considered an empowering narrative for people who do not fit in, a common experience among the teen readers who are the intended audience of most young adult literature. However, it is not clear that this narrative truly supports neurodivergent people, despite neurogenetic differences being the explicit form of diversity the series’ events hinge upon. This article critically examines the portrayal of neurological difference in Roth’s universe through the neurodiversity paradigm, and finds that neurotypicality is significantly privileged by the narrative.

 

Keywords: Neurodiversity; young adult literature; Veronica Roth; representation; autism


Full Text:

PDF