Yes, Mirrors, but also Windows
Anyone who is keeping up on trends in children’s and teen publishing knows that there has been a big push in the last few years to encourage publishers to print more diverse books and libraries to add these books to their collections. This “We Need Diverse Books” movement has been championed by ALA, ALSC, and YALSA, but there has also been push back.
Some communities question the value of having diverse books because their demographics aren’t diverse. And some libraries feel that books with non-majority characters are a waste of money because they don’t circulate well. Newbery Honor winning author Grace Lin discusses the impact diverse books have on both diverse and homogeneous communities and readers in this excellent TEDx Talk: The Windows and Mirrors of Your Child’s Bookshelf.
For other resources on diverse books, visit some of these sites:
- Everyday Diversity
- Rich in Color
- Latinix in Kids Lit
- Children’s Book Council “Diverse Kids’ & YA Lit”
- Disability in Kids Lit
- Rainbow Book Lists: GLBTQ Books for Children & Teens
- We Need Diverse Books
- Lee & Low Books: Diversity Baseline Publishing Survey Results
- Sarah Park Dahlen “Picture This: Reflecting Diversity in Children’s Book Publishing”
- Libraries & Diversity for Not-So Diverse Populations