Amy Bowllan at Bowllan’s Blog has a series of posts titled “Writers Against Racism,” in which she asks authors about their experiences of racism and their opinion on the ways in which literature can be used to combat its effects. The ongoing series so far includes interviews with Zetta Elliot, Mitali Perkins, David Yoo, Neesha Meminger, Tanita S. Davis, and many more. In one of the August installments, Bowllan interviewed children’s literature specialist—and PaperTigers contributor/consultant—Laura Atkins. Laura’s views on the topic are very interesting, and partly informed by years of working in the children’s publishing industry developing multicultural picture books (her insightful paper “What’s the Story? Reflections on White Privilege in the Publication of Children’s Literature,” has recently become available online).
Laura says on her blog of the “Writers Against Racism” series: “The questions and answers reveal how the personal and the political are intimately linked. Each person has their own experiences, their own stories to tell—and all of us have connected to and through literature as a way of combating racism.” I can’t imagine a more effective weapon than literature in this worthwhile battle. Can you?