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BLACK CHILDREN’S BOOK AUTHORS ARE CHANGING CHILDREN’S LITERATURE
Newsletter / January 6, 2019

BLACK CHILDREN’S BOOK AUTHORS WHO ARE CHANGING CHILDREN’S LITERATURE Walter Dean Myers grew up with a deep love of literature, but he quickly noticed the disappointing lack of diversity in children’s books. He was deeply concerned about how excluding Black children from literature might make them feel ‘otherized.’ He has written over 110 books in an attempt to legitimize Black identity, and he has also won more awards than any other author for young adults. Some of his most popular children’s books are We are America: A Tribute from the Heart, Looking Like Me, Ida B. Wells: Let the Truth Be Told, and Where Does the Day Go? Jacqueline Woodson featured as well. READ MORE… ALICE B. MCGINTY/TWO OF THE BEST STORIES FROM 2018   In acclaimed author and poet Jacqueline Woodson’s “The Day You Begin” (2018, Nancy Paulsen Books, written by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by Rafael Lopez, ages 4-9), we see a close-up of a brown-skinned girl fretfully walking through the door of a classroom. “There will be times when you walk into a room and no one there is quite like you,” the text reads. “Maybe it will be your skin, your clothes, or the curl of your hair… or…

‘CAN’T UNDO WRONG. CAN ONLY DO OUR BEST TO MAKE THINGS RIGHT.’
Newsletter / December 30, 2018

FREE BOOKS AVAILABLE FOR LOCAL STUDENTS PRIOR TO AWARD-WINNING NOVELIST’S VISIT TO ORANGEBURG (Jewell Parker) Rhodes is the author of the middle-grade books “Ghost Boys,” “Towers Falling” and the Louisiana Girls Trilogy: “Ninth Ward,” “Sugar” and “Bayou Magic.” Rhodes has received numerous honors including: the American Book Award, the National Endowment of the Arts Award in Fiction, the Black Caucus of the American Library Award for Literary Excellence, the PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Award for Outstanding Writing and the Coretta Scott King Honor Book. READ MORE…   BOOKS IN BRIEF (The Day You Begin) is based on a poem from Jacqueline Woodson’s memoir “Brown Girl Dreaming,” which won the National Book Award. It begins: “There will be times when you walk into a room and no one there is quite like you. Maybe it will be your skin, your clothes, or the curl of your hair. There will be times when no one understands the way words curl from your mouth, the beautiful language of the country you left behind.”  READ MORE…   WHAT YOU’RE READING: CHILDREN’S BOOKS FOR A GLOBAL NATION Featuring Jane Addams Authors Jacqueline Woodson and Phillip Hoose READ MORE… ACCLAIMED PORTLAND AUTHOR PAIRS WITH POET FOR NEW YA…

SUPPORT PEACE & JUSTICE LEARNING
Newsletter / December 23, 2018

A YEAR END MESSAGE FROM THE JANE ADDAMS PEACE ASSOCIATION These long winter nights prompt us to reflect on the year behind and make plans for the year to come.  The challenges of working toward peace and social justice in 2018 were profound. Despite this fact, the Jane Addams Peace Association remains true to our mission: to deepen understanding of peace and justice for children and their adults through reflection, dialogue and social action. This mission requires supporting those who work for peaceful change – wherever they are found –  especially those working with and for youth, and youth themselves. We promote equity for all peoples, freedom, cultural understanding, social justice and, above all, peace.  We hope that you will join us in this work by making a donation in support by clicking here. Looking forward to 2019, Thank you.   YOUNG READERS: THESE BOOKS TACKLE SEXISM, GRIEF AND CULTURE–FOR KIDS The poems touch on kid-oriented details, like kites and food, while they impart quick facts about the holidays. The richly colored artwork varies in emotion from joyful to solemn, with hints of humor along the way. READ MORE…   ARTIST AND BOOKSTORE OWNER HOPES TO BRING COMMUNITIES TOGETHER R. Gregory Christie…

JANE ADDAMS AUTHORS ON 2018 BOOK LISTS
Newsletter / December 16, 2018

BEST OF 2018 FOR JUNIOR READERS Curtis proves once again that he is a master of bringing the complexities of history to young readers and keep them riveted to the tale. READ MORE…   THE BEST BOOKS AND YA NOVELS OF 2018 FOR YOUNG READERS Jacqueline Woodson’s Harbor Me is named…. READ MORE… CODE SWITCH’S 2018 BOOK GUIDE Jacqueline Woodson makes a recommendation… READ MORE…   BOOK GIFT GUIDE 2018 This memoir, by the author of “The Soul of the Octopus,” is full of wonder, empathy and wisdom, a true treasure. READ MORE… READ MORE…   IN 1982, A 10-YEAR-OLD AMERICAN WROTE TO THE HEAD OF THE U.S.S.R.  HE WROTE BACK… Pravda published Smith’s letter, which congratulated Andropov on his new job, expressed the writer’s worry about nuclear war, and implored the general secretary to “please tell me how you are going to help to not have a war.” Smith insisted that “God made the world for us to share and take care of. Not fight over.” Not content with being published, Smith then wrote to the U.S.S.R.’s U.S. ambassador, asking if Andropov was going to respond. READ MORE… JOURNEY TO THE SOVIET UNION BY SAMANTHA SMITH ARTS PREVIEW: ‘BACK OF THE…

GO OUT OF YOUR WAY TO BE KIND
Newsletter / December 9, 2018

I’M YOUR NEIGHBOR: WELCOMING IMMIGRANTS, REFUGEES, AND MIGRANTS AS NEIGHBORS THROUGH THE SHARING OF CHILDREN’S LITERATURE AND OTHER STORIES FEATURING MALALA’S MAGIC PENCIL Malala’s first picture book will inspire young readers everywhere to find the magic all around them. This beautifully illustrated volume tells Malala’s story for a younger audience and shows them the worldview that allowed Malala to hold on to hope even in the most difficult of times. READ MORE… MALALA YOUSAFZAI WINS SECOND HARVARD ACTIVISM AWARD “Malala speaks powerfully to the strength and perseverance of women and girls who are oppressed,” said Gergen in The Harvard Gazette. “Her remarkable story has inspired girls — and boys as well — to follow in her footsteps and has activated a generation of practitioners and legislators who are fighting for equality in their own communities.” READ MORE… AUTHOR INSPIRES MAIN STREET SCHOOL STUDENTS TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE Main Street School fourth- and fifth-graders, who had been reading Amal Unbound, the story of a young Pakistani girl forced into indentured servitude as part of their Global School Read Aloud activities in October, welcomed the book’s author, Aisha Saeed… The book’s main character, Amal, was inspired by Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani activist for female education and the…

BLACK WRITERS: ABIDING SPIRIT FOR YOUNG ADULTS AND ON THE SCREEN
Newsletter / December 2, 2018

LITERARY COLLECTIVE: CONSIDERING THE JAMES BALDWINS AND LANGSTON HUGHES’ OF OUR TIMES Young praises poet Lucille Clifton, calling her “an abiding spirit.” Clifton’s 1993 poem “won’t you celebrate with me” resonates with Young. The poem’s title also serves as its first line. The last lines are ‘Come celebrate with me that everyday something has tried to kill me and has failed.’ READ MORE… 1978 SPECIAL RECOGNITION BROOKLYN AUTHOR COMPLIES YA BOOK ABOUT BEING BLACK IN AMERICA ….a star-studded collection of stories by award-winning, bestselling and emerging African-American young adult authors on what it’s like to be a black teen in America: “Black Enough: Stories of Being Young & Black in America,” The collection, curated and edited by Zoboi, features stories from 17 beloved YA authors: Tracey Baptiste, Coe Booth, Dhonielle Clayton, Brandy Colbert, Jay Coles, Lamar Giles, Leah Henderson, Justina Ireland, Varian Johnson, Kekla Magoon, Tochi Onyebuchi, Jason Reynolds, Nic Stone, Liara Tamani, Renee Watson, Rita Williams-Garcia and Zoboi. READ MORE… THESE ARE THE BLACK AUTHORS BARRY JENKINS, TERRY MCMILLIAN AND OTHERS SAY HOLLYWOOD SHOULDN’T IGNORE The list of stories, plays and novels by black writers primed for screen adaptation is vast. Works by Colson Whitehead, Octavia Butler, August Wilson, Richard…

2018 Jane Addams Honor Title Has a Sequel
Newsletter / November 25, 2018

BOOK PAGES INTERVIEWS LINDA WILLIAMS JACKSON Linda Williams Jackson follows up her critically acclaimed debut, Midnight Without a Moon (2018 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Honor Title), with a new story starring 13-year-old Rose Lee Carter. A Sky Full of Stars opens in 1955 in racially divided Stillwater, Mississippi. “I consider it a privilege to put myself in a young person’s shoes and relive youth in the form of a story.” READ MORE…   ELIZABETH ACEVEDO WINS 2018 NBA FOR YOUNG PEOPLE’S LITERATURE She (Robin Benway) thanked her fellow judges—Lamar Giles, Grace Greene, Valerie Koehler, and Mitali Perkins—for “not only reading hundreds of books this year but for doing so with critical eyes, sensitive hearts, and incredible senses of humor.” The word that Benway said the judges kept coming back to was propulsion: “Is this a book that will propel and enrich the joyful experience of reading? Is this a title that will not only hold the reader’s attention as a youth, but also serve as a crucial step in the process of creating a curious and lifelong reader?” READ MORE…   THE 10 BEST YA AND CHILDREN’S BOOKS OF 2018 In her first middle grade novel since Brown Girl Dreaming, Woodson, a former National Book…

Native American Authors Build Empathy and Understanding
Newsletter / November 18, 2018

WHY THANKSGIVING ISN’T NECESSARILY A CELEBRATION: A NATIVE AMERICAN WRITER’S TAKE Louise Erdrich debuted with “Love Medicine” in 1984. The writing in this book, which follows many different people, families and experiences, is so strong and distinct. It walks the reader through so many kinds of voices in a world that, at the time it came out, so few people knew or understood. READ MORE… AUTHOR TOMMY ORANGE RETURNS TO TAOS In his (Orange’s) novel there are many cultural references and at one point, Native writer Louise Erdrich (Chippewa) is mentioned. In real life, Orange is fortunate enough to have a blurb by Erdrich on the book jacket… READ MORE… COLUMN: NATIVE AMERICAN AUTHORS TO READ A local here in Minneapolis, she (Louise Edrich) is considered a powerhouse in the Native American writing community. Her works have been up for the Pulitzer Award for Fiction and she has won many acclaimed literary awards. Erdrich’s novels range from fiction to local history to youth to adult and can be found almost anywhere A prolific young adult writer and master storyteller, Tim Tingle is the author for any adult or young adult who wants to learn more about Choctaw stories that are passed down…

HISTORICAL FICTION THAT TAKES CHILDREN TO WAR ZONES AND INTERNMENT CAMPS
Newsletter / November 11, 2018

HISTORICAL FICTION THAT TAKES CHILDREN TO WAR ZONES AND INTERNMENT CAMPS The United States government created Indian boarding schools in the late 19th century to control Native Americans and eradicate their culture. Run on military lines with draconian rules and brutal punishments, they’re a stain on our national history — yet some Native American parents, given the complexity of their circumstances, willingly and with full understanding chose to place their own children there. That situation is sensitively dramatized in TWO ROADS, by the celebrated Abenaki author Joseph Bruchac. FINDING LANGSTON, the first middle-grade novel by the picture book writer Lesa Cline-Ransome (“Before She Was Harriet”), takes us into the years just after World War II. READ MORE…   DELVING INTO THE WORLD OF YOUNG ADULT LITERATURE Mitali Perkins As a child, a young Mitali had found her safe place in the fire escape, where she would often crawl out on to read and write. The adventurous, colourful and insightful prose of Mitali Perkins combines issues of diaspora, body image, identity and self-worth among young adults of varied roots. “Rickshaw Girl” deserves a special mention because in it Perkins has taken on the challenging task of portraying the changing face of a…

‘UNDOCUMENTED’ IS A PAEAN TO AMERICA’S EMBATTLED MIGRANTS
Newsletter / November 4, 2018

‘UNDOCUMENTED’ IS A PAEAN TO AMERICA’S EMBATTLED MIGRANTS With Undocumented: A Worker’s Fight, award-winning Mexican-American author Duncan Tonatiuh shows how stories that are all too common can be reinvented in powerful new ways toward vital contemporary purpose, sometimes by drawing on age-old traditions. READ MORE…   GIRL RESCUES RIVER Award-winning Canadian author Anne Laurel Carter tells the story of Bowles’ fight to clean the river in My River. Written in Bowles’ voice, the book helps kids understand that science isn’t just something in a textbook, and that they can make a difference through local environmental activism. It’s a message many adults could stand to learn as well. READ MORE… CHILDREN’S AUTHOR WINTER TO SPEAK “I would hope my biographies would open the minds of children to the value of tolerance toward people who are different, toward people who’ve been discriminated against, toward people who’ve had the courage to just be themselves,” said (Jonah) Winter. READ MORE… JOHN GRIFFIN MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS HOST AWARD-WINNING AUTHOR “Mockingbird” writer Kathryn Erskine discusses inspiration, character development and more.  READ MORE…   ‘I AM A WITNESS’ – A CONVERSATION WITH EDWIDGE DANTICAT (Quoting Edwidge Danticat) Those of us who know and are around activists, and I mean true activists… are…