Multicultural Body Image in Children’s and Young Adult Publishing

By Amanda Burns.

Published by The Diversity Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Children and young adult publishing in the United States of America is a Eurocentric business that overlooks non-white ethnicities. In the recent past the publishing industry has begun to produce materials for African American children and young adults that is relevant to today’s society and the issues facing these children and young adults. A piece of written work, whether a picture book, novel, or anything in-between, for children and young adults will only be relevant if it addresses the issues that young African Americans are facing today. African American children and young adults are facing body image issues just as all other ethnicities are. In the United States there is a main focus on “fat lit” or literature about the obese white American child. African American children and young adults face this same body image issue, but also two others. These body image issues, that include their skin tone, hair type, and weight, are often overlooked. Taking a closer look at what the publishing industry is producing in regards to these issues allows non-African Americans to get an insiders view and gain knowledge on what other ethnicities in the United States are facing everyday.

Keywords: Critical Race Theory, Multicultural Children’s Literature, Body Image, African American

International Journal of Diversity in Organizations, Communities and Nations, Volume 11, Issue 3, pp.103-110. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 728.410KB).

Amanda Burns

Graduate Student, School of Information Studies, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA

Graduate student in the Masters in Library Science program at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

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