As Demographics Shift, Kids Books Stay Stubbornly White

“When it comes to diversity, childrens books are sorely lacking; instead of presenting a representative range of faces, theyre overwhelmingly white. How bad is the disconnect? A report by the Cooperative Childrens Book Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison found that only 3 percent of childrens books are by or about Latinos — even though nearly a quarter of all public school children today are Latino. When kids are presented with bookshelves that unbalanced, parents can have a powerful influence. Take 8-year-old Havana Machado, who likes Dr. Seuss and Diary of a Wimpy Kid. At her mothers insistence, Havana also has lots of books featuring strong Latinas, like Josefina and Marisol from the American Girl Doll books. She says she likes these characters because, with their long, dark hair and olive skin, they look a lot like her.” (via NPR)

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