Social Values in Young Adults Novels: A Study of Selected Works by Nahida Esmail
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This study focused on the critical investigation of social values in three Young Adults novels by Nahida Esmail: Living in the Shade (2011), The Detective of Shangani: The Mystery of the Lost Rubies (2014) and Lessilie the City Maasai (2011). The novels address issues about Young Adults (YA) as they are employed by the author of the selected novels. Young Adult Literature (YAL) is a genre that both adults and young adults love to read because of its small size and simplicity. The study was undertaken in order to establish, analyse and bring to limelight the social values portrayed by the author, explore the literary devices that the author employs to communicate social values and explore the author‟s social vision with regard to the youth in her society. The study employs two theories, Sociological literary theory and Formalism to analyse the three novels. Sociological literary theory was crucial because it helped the researcher to analyse the novels by examining how the social functions in literature and how literature works in the society, while formalism enabled the researcher to read the novels closely as the independent entities. This being a subjective study, the researcher applies the descriptive approach to understand and appreciate philosophical issues found in the novels and brings them to limelight as she associates them with practical social life. The researcher uses purposive sampling to get the three novels for the study. The data were obtained from the three young adult novels, library researches, journals, periodicals and other relevant materials. These data were also used to enhance and enrich the work. The objectives of the study were achieved through extensive reading and analysis of the three novels. Therefore, the Social values which were established, analyzed and brought to limelight from reading the three novels in different perspectives and the specific literary devices used to underscore such social values, are compared with other data from different texts, articles, theses and journals to validate and support the findings. The study also describes the author Social vision about the Youth in her society and recommends literary studies on Esmail‟s social vision using works which have not been sampled in this analysis and as well as on YAs novels by other contemporary African writers from Tanzania and beyond. The study has, however prescribes that every scholar who is a literary writer, creating for YA has to ensure that the subject of any literary text they write for YA is about YA and it revolves on the centre of their learning experiences and they should stick on doing studies on youth to enlighten them with their potential cultural aspects or communal ethos that make them to be valued and accepted in their communities.