is in this
statement : Despite census data that shows 37% of the US population consists of
people of color, only 10% of children's books published have diversity content.
As I understand
it, multicultural books apply to books which do not exclusively feature the
characteristics, physical and otherwise, of the dominant part of the society. As
more and more countries become increasingly global in their population mix it
is important to have this multicultural vision for books especially for
In the first place,
it helps to share the cultural differences, making them seem less strange and
therefore more 'comfortable'. And this
cultural mix can be both internal to countries and external - learning about other cultures.
so much, not always just from text books or those recommended by the schools
as extra reading. Pleasure reading is a strong force in getting an understanding
of how others live and think.
Coming from a
country which produces children's literature that would be regarded as
multicultural in the USA, it has often been disheartening to hear that the children
there only like to read books related to the USA way of life, so by extension
our books will not sell there as very few would be interested.
Of course, there
is quite an imbalance in that our children are inundated with books from the
USA, in particular, and with media visions of life there. No wonder a recent
survey stated that about half the Jamaican youth population would give up citizenship
to migrate http://www.jamaicanews.net/index.php/sid/229359551.
I have no
answers – Just saying. Hope the multicultural children's book day activities sensitize
some folks to this issue.