Skip to main content

Multicultural Education: Read Diverse Books

Reference Librarian

Julia Wilbers's picture
Julia Wilbers
4601 Mid Rivers Mall Drive
Cottleville, MO 63376

"We Need Diverse Books"

The #WeNeedDiverseBooks movement began in 2014 with a tweet and a hashtag that started trending on April 29.

"The All-White World of Children's Books" by Nancy Larrick was published in 1965 recognizing the lack of diversity in children's books.

"Where are the People of Color in Children's Books" by Walter Dean Myers came out in 2013 and things weren't looking much better... So the movement grew from the recognition that things weren't changing in a meaningful way to accurately reflect the diversity of the children the books were made for.

Children need to be exposed to diversity and one easy way to do that is through the literature they read. For more information about this check out "Children Are Not Colorblind: How Young Children Learn Race" by Erin N. Winkler, Ph.D.

This is something that is being taken seriously in the classroom and outside it - libraries are also making a concerted effort to show diversity in programming and library collections. Diversity matters.


Walking through the library


#WeNeedDiverseBooks is about more than just race, though that was what got the ball rolling. Books need to be diverse when it comes to challenging gender norms, showing differently-abled individuals, reflecting different types of love and families... Diverse books are important for so many reasons.

Diversity Gap in Children's Books

Diversity Gap in Children's Books Infographic