Please note:: If you missed the PHAT Fiction panel discussion that was held last month at the American Library Association Annual Conference, you can listen to a audio recording at: LiveScribe. Special thanks to
PHAT Fiction Wikispace and participate in the discussion.
Last month, I served as a co-moderator for the PHAT Fiction Panel discussion at the 2010 American Library Association Conference in Washington, D.C. For me, participating on this panel discussion was a dream come true. The panel discussion about the Street Literature genre was organized by Susan McClelland, Reader’s Advisory Librarian for the Evanston Public Library in Evanston, Illinois. PHAT Fiction stands for popular, hip and tempting fiction and is also the title of her PHAT Fiction blog. I have been an avid supporter and advocate of the Street Literature genre for several years and have often times been ‘beat to the pulp’ for doing so (I have the scars to prove it). So you can only guess I was ‘geeked’ about participating.
Its hard working in a school/district where you and a very few colleagues value and support the genre. Lately, I’ve been criticized during presentations that I have given about the inclusion of Street Literature in school library collections…don’t get me started. Despite these obstacles, I continue to move forward because I see the end result: This genre touches and impacts the lives of tweens and teens in positive ways. Here are just a couple of the first hand observations I’ve made over the last couple of years:
1. Students and their parents are reading! The genre is reaching a group of readers that have historically been ignored by publishing companies.
3. The stories within the genre serve as a platform for discussion/dialogue for tweens and teens with adults.
Aaron, Relentless, Relentless Aaron Has Done It. 2006. ABC Nightly News video courtesy of YouTube. http://youtu.be/FE2A-VPbOoI .
Morris, Vanessa I. 2010, “Urban” Is Not the New “Black.” http://streetliterature.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2010-07-04T11%3A50%3A00-04%3A00&max-results=4 .
Smith, Carl B. 1994. Helping Children Understand Literary Genres. Bloomington, IN: ERIC Clearinghouse on Reading English and Communication.
Woods, Terry, Terry Woods, True to the Game. 2008. Books Video TV courtesy of YouTube. http://youtu.be/ddafBrKcZ1k