Where’s the Diversity, Hollywood? Sci-Fi and Fantasy Blockbusters Overwhelmingly White, Male

Summer blockbuster season is in full swing. For many moviegoers, that means escaping to a galaxy far, far away—or perhaps just a different version of our own planet Earth—through science fiction and fantasy movies. As fans clamor for the latest cinematic thrills, we decided to focus our next Diversity Gap study on the level of racial and gender representation in these ever-popular genres that consistently rake in the big bucks for movie studios.

Talking to Kids about Current Events and Conflicts

Our literacy specialist, Jill Eisenberg, offers suggestions on how to use picture books to discuss current events and conflicts, along with book recommendations and tips for talking with children about complex topics.

Beyond “Did you know…”: Teaching Geo-Literacy Using the Vanishing Cultures Book Series

Jill Eisenberg, our Literacy Specialist, discusses the importance of geo-literacy education in today’s classroom and shares ideas on how to use Jan Reynolds’ Vanishing Cultures series to support geo-literacy learning.

Where’s the Diversity, Hollywood? 85 Years of the Academy Awards

The Academy Awards will soon unveil the very best in filmmaking today. As the prediction chatter ricochets around the web, our curiosity about the level of racial and gender representation spanning the entire 85-year history of the Academy Awards was our next Diversity Gap study.

Whitewashing Book Covers: A Trip to Barnes & Noble Part II

Over the course of the last academic year, I co-taught a year-long unit that allowed a sixth-grade class to explore prejudices in books and the book industry. After studying how book covers and content can marginalize groups (we studied treatments of race, ethnicity, gender, body image, sexuality, class, ability, and more), we took a field trip to Barnes & Noble—by far my favorite piece of the project. The kids exited the store with steam issuing from their ears.

Whitewashing Book Covers: What Do Kids Think? Part I

In my first year as Children’s Librarian at Bank Street, I worked with two teachers on a project that allowed sixth-graders to explore implicit and explicit biases in publishing. Using book covers as a starting point for discussion, we engaged in conversations about identity, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, body image, class, and ability as they relate to books and beyond.

Literary Agents Discuss the Diversity Gap in Publishing

Literary agents make up a big part of the publishing machine. Most publishers no longer consider unsolicited submissions, so an agent is a must if you even want to get your foot in the door. Each year, agents review many promising manuscripts and portfolios so it is safe to say they have a good sense of who makes up the talent pool of children’s book publishing. So what kind of diversity are agents seeing?

Where’s the Diversity? 5 Reasons Why the US Government Isn’t More Diverse

In our previous diversity studies on the Emmy Awards, the children’s book field, and the Tony Awards, we interviewed people who actively work in television, publishing, and the theater. We attempted to duplicate this approach for our diversity study on US politics, but with the government shutdown, none of the twelve congress people and senators we contacted responded to our efforts to reach out to them.

Book List: Children’s Books About Transracial Adoption

A list of children’s, middle grade, and young adult books that deal with transracial adoption in some way.

True or False? Multicultural Books Don’t Sell

As an independent bookseller, former school librarian, and lifelong avid reader, I crave the day when publishing lists are as diverse and rich as the playgrounds of our nation, and the conversation about representations of diversity in children’s literature is as unnecessary as the question of whether or not women should vote.

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