Don't Drink the Water: Colonialism and Pete Hautman's <u>Godless</u>

  • Matthew Prickett Longwood University


Nodelman's thesis of childhood as a colonized state, with every aspect controlled and mandated by adults, purposes that children and teenagers can be controlled through a variety of pressures.  A colonial reading of a story can be used to determine typical controlling factors and to examine how such colonization subverts childhood, or adolescents.  In Pete Hautman’s Young Adult novel Godless, religion is the controlling factor under examination.  While Hautman’s novel does not insult or belittle religion, it does showcase how an adult’s use of religion is one of the greatest powers he or she has over a teenager.

Author Biography

Matthew Prickett, Longwood University
Matthew Prickett received his M.A. in English Education and Writing from Longwood University, where he is an adjunct instructor in the Department of English and Modern Languages. He is currently a graduate student at Hollins University in the Children's Literature Program. His research interests include colonizing childhood, GLBTQ literature for children and young adults, and teenage masculinity.
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