This study analyzes gender portrayals and marketing in Young Adult novels. These portrayals are examined within the novels and within the marketing of the novels. In this study I attempt to answer two questions: “How have concepts of gender in bestselling young adult novels changed over the past 20 years?”; and, “How have these changes impacted the effectiveness and nature of the gendered marketing of Young Adult novels?” I hypothesized that the marketing of novels has become both less gendered and more subversive (or non-traditional) over the past 20 years. I further hypothesize that marketing books in highly and traditionally gendered ways has become less effective at promoting sales over time. This study employs two analytical methods: A qualitative content analysis of four Young Adult bestselling novels; and, a quantitative coding exercise designed to analyze book synopses. The coding exercise generates quantitative data about the magnitude and direction of gendering in book marketing. Regression analyses are used to test my hypotheses, using the coding data and bestseller rankings. The results from this paper are mainly inconclusive. I found very little evidence that the amount/type of gendered content/marketing is changing overtime.


Long, Melanie

Second Advisor

Gibbons, Zoe


Economics; English


English, Economics, Gender, Marketing, Novels, Young Adult

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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