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Date of Award

Spring 2024

Document Type

Masters Thesis

Department or Program Affiliation

English -- Master of Fine Arts

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



First Advisor

Araki-Kawaguchi, Kiik, 1983-

Second Advisor

Trueblood, Kathryn R., 1960-

Third Advisor

VanderStaay, Steven


This thesis is as much of a love letter to Earth and all her inhabitants as it is a lamentation. Though written for children, it refuses to smooth over, downplay, or withhold the devastations of capitalism, the climate crisis, the Industrial Revolution, homophobia, and urbanization. Rather, this thesis seeks to bear witness, providing a companion with which to prepare for the world children are met with instead of the world we wish for them. Following an eleven-year-old autistic boy’s friendship with a curmudgeonly elderly queer man, Half a House explores the pressing feeling of not belonging, unconventional friendships, community, and creaturehood. It demonstrates the responsibility I believe children’s literature has to implore our community to think about their animal selves and their identity as a tellurian. It seeks to re-earn children's trust, honoring their incredible sensitivities, innate animism, and deep intelligence of the world in which they find themselves.




novel, fiction, kidlit, children's literature, LGBT, lgbtq, lgbtq+, middle grade, weird fiction, speculative Fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, climate fiction, ecocriticism, ecotheology, climate change, climate disaster, capitalism, social commentary, absurdism, literary nonsense


Western Washington University

OCLC Number


Subject – LCSH

Middle school boys--Juvenile fiction; Autistic youth--Juvenile fiction; Autism--Juvenile fiction; Older gay men--Juvenile fiction; Belonging (Social psychology)--Juvenile fiction; Friendship--Juvenile fiction; Homophobia--Juvenile fiction; Capitalism--Juvenile fiction; Climatic changes--Juvenile fiction




masters theses




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