Of 3,200 children’s books published in 2013, just 93 were about African Americans.
The findings are part of a newly released study conducted by the Cooperative Children’s Book Center at the University of Wisconsin.
In 1985 the Cooperative Children’s Book Center began to document the numbers of books published in the United States for children each year which were written and/or illustrated by African Americans. When then-CCBC Director Ginny Moore Kruse served as a member of the Coretta Scott King Award Committee that year, we were appalled to learn that, of the approximately 2,500 trade books that were published that year for children and teens, only 18 were created by African Americans, and thus eligible for the Coretta Scott King Award. Using the CCBC’s collection and working in conjunction with the Coretta Scott King Award Task Force of the American Library Association, we have continued to document the number of books each year and to publish this statistic in our annual publication CCBC Choices.
The cooperative also keeps track of the numbers of books by Latinos, American Indians, Asian/Pacifics and Asian/Pacific Americans.
It not only documents the number of books written by people of color, but about them, including titles created by white authors and illustrators.
Researchers have tied self love in children to reading about individuals who are similar to you. The lack of available books for and by black youth greatly contributes to the notion that one is less than.
What do you think of this notion?
Sound off below!