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The CCBC Shows Us How Far Children’s Literature Has to Go

May 2, 2014
Photo Credit: Meg Schiebel, Children's Library and SLIS Graduate '13
Photo Credit: Meg Schiebel, Children’s Library and SLIS Graduate ’13

You may have noticed some campaigns going around your social media circles lately having to do with diversity in children’s books. One campaign is #weneeddiversebooks with answers like “because every voice matters and needs to be represented” and “stories are our truths.”

In a Huffington Post article dated April 30th, Starr LaTronica, President of the Association for Library Service to Children, wrote about the ways libraries are helping to bridge this divide. We have an extremely diverse nation, but the books are still not reflecting our demographics.

LaTronica touches on the work that UW–Madison’s own CCBC, or Cooperative Children’s Book Center, does to change the status quo. The CCBC, according to its website, “is a noncirculating examination, study, and research library for Wisconsin school and public librarians, teachers, early childhood care providers, university students, and others interested in children’s and young adult literature.”

The biggest thing the CCBC can do is to gather statistics around the books in their collections to prove the state of the industry. LaTronica states, “The most current data from CCBC shows that out of the more than 5,000 titles published in 2013 only 253 were about Nonwhites.”

To read more about the work of the CCBC and the state of children’s books, head over to the Huffington Post article.