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International and Multicultural Picture Books

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Pilar Jefferson

on 14 August 2014

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Transcript of International and Multicultural Picture Books

International and Multicultural Picture Books
Pilar Jefferson
Alix Zacharias Intern
August 14, 2014

Coretta Scott King Award, Americas Award
Location 3:
Chinese Publishing
Top Publishers:
Location 4:
Taiwanese Publishing
Top publishers:
Location 2: Mexican Publishing
FILIJ (Feria Internacional del Libro Infantil y Juvenil)

IBBY Congress 2014
Mirrors and Windows:
Research Goals and Questions
Be Excellent Children’s books can provide young readers with both mirrors and windows. How can we advocate for and attract a more diverse audience?
Take It Outside Who and where else are picture book writers?
Build Capacity Where are intercultural partnerships possible and how can they be promoted at The Carle?
Attending Publishers
Bologna Children's Book Fair 2014
Europe: 631
Top Countries: Italy, UK, France
Asia: 160
Top Countries: Korea, China, Japan
North America: 145
Top Countries: US, Canada, Mexico
South America: 89
Top Countres: Brazil, Colombia, Argentina
Oceania: 17
Top Countries: Australia, New Zealand
Africa: 9
Top Countries: South Africa
Is publishing the problem?:
The Challenge of Translation
Final Destination:
Amherst, MA
ESL Adult Students @ the Jones
Amherst Family Center
Round the World Women
International Students Office
Japanese Language School
Potential Community Outreach
The Big Picture
Of 3,200 US trade books from 2013, 93 were about African-Americans, 34 about Native Americans, 68 about Asians/Asian Americans, and 57 about Latinos.
"The words 'translated from the _________' on the title page of a book is code for admire but don't buy it."
-Dorothy Briley
Export vs Import:
Countries that export the most import the least: UK (3%), US (1%)
European Countries that import the most: Finland (80%), The Netherlands (40%), Italy (40%), Germany (30%)

In 2010, 70-90% of the children's books in
Non-European/North American countries were imported and written by Euro-American authors.
"Why Translate Children's Books?"
by Emer O'Sullivan
IBBY Congress 2012 London
Top Publishers
Foreign competition
Translation/Production Costs
Literacy Rates
White Raven Winners:
Funding Opportunities
AAM Museums Connect
USBBY Special Projects Fund
Background: Pre-1980 the Mexican children's book industry was practically non-existent. In the 80s, a national section of IBBY formed in Mexico who then sponsored the first Mexican international book fair (FILIJ) in Mexico City. This national revelation about the lack of children's books caused publishing houses to find ways to fill the gap in the market.

Most notably, government sponsored Fondo de Cultura Economica, which was founded in the early 20th century as a textbook publisher, began importing and publishing books from Europe, both Spanish books from Spain and translations from English authors such as Anthony Browne and Javier Saez Castan. Fondo also became a training center for Mexican illustrators.

The trend of government sponsored publishing continues today and while most of the picture books in Mexico are still translations, greater legislative focus on early reading is helping boost the picture book market.
Why Picture Books?: An Introduction
Picture books are about relating to the lives of children who experience differences of race, ability, gender, ethnicity, language, religion and sexual orientation in their daily lives.
If we are representing picture books and picture books are supposed to represent children’s experiences, then we have a responsibility pay attention to that diversity

Things that I will discuss:
Issues of multicultural children's literature in the US.
The connection between the US publishing industry and the rest of the world.
Examples of international children's publishing in:
Mexico, Taiwan & China
Diversity and children's literature in our own backyard
Where to next?

Source: Cooperative Children's Book Center at the
University of Wisconsin-Madison School for Education
well no, but...
"BookCon Controversy Begets
Diversity Social Media Campaign"

-Publishers Weekly, May 1, 2014

March 15, 2014:
Walter Dean Myers editorial
"Where are the People of Color in Children's Books?"

is published in the New York Times
The Stories for All Project: Putting Our Money Where Our Mouth Is
March 2013 - $1,000,000 purchase of diverse books from Lee & Low and HarperCollins
Summer 2014 - Pledge to buy 10,000 copies of selected books representing marginalized groups.

Location 1:
US Publishing
American Indian Youth Literature Award
Awarded to: identify and honor the very best writing and illustrations by and about American Indians, biannually.
Pura Belpre Award
The Coretta Scott King Book Awards
Awarded to: An outstanding African American authors and illustrators of books for children and young adults that demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values.
Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature
Awarded to: honor and recognize individual works related to Asian/Pacific American experiences (either historical or contemporary) or Asian/Pacific American cultures.
Ezra Jack Keats Book Award
Awarded to: recognize and encourage authors and illustrators starting out in the field of children’s books. The committee seeks first books that portray the universal qualities of childhood, a strong and supportive family, and the multicultural nature of our world.
Awarded to: Latino/Latina writer and illustrator whose work best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth.
Sponsored by: The Association for Library Service to Children and the American Library Association as well as REFORMA (National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking)
In honor of: Pura Belpre, the first Latina librarian at the New York Public Library.
Sponsored by: The American Indian Library Association
Sponsored by: The American Library Assocation commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and honoring his wife Coretta Scott King.
Every other year IBBY presents the Awards to a living author and illustrator whose complete works have made a lasting contribution to children's literature. The nominations are made by the National Sections of IBBY and a distinguished international jury of children’s literature specialists selects the recipients.
Recent winners from:
Illustrators - Brazil, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy
Writers - Japan, Argentina, UK, Switzerland

The IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award was established in 1986 during the IBBY Congress in Tokyo. The Asahi Shimbun newspaper company sponsors the Award. It is given biennially to two groups or institutions whose outstanding activities are judged to be making a lasting contribution to reading promotion programmes for children and young people.

The nominations are submitted by the National Sections of IBBY and may include projects from any part of the world. The jury consists of members of the IBBY Executive Committee. The prize of US $10,000 and a diploma is presented to the winners at the biennial IBBY Congress.
The last 2 awards went to...:
"The Children’s Book Bank is a registered charity that supports childhood literacy by providing free books and literacy support to children in low-income neighbourhoods in the Toronto area."
Project for the Study of Alternative Education in South Africa
Since 2006, a particular concentration has been on reading promotion through the establishment of community based reading clubs. at the end of 2011 and in 2012, PRAESA begins a new phase, with a biliteracy development focus by initiating a
national reading-for-enjoyment campaign called Nal’ibali
SIPAR is a collective venture, devoted entirely to Cambodia. The organisation has played a pioneering role in the rebirth of education in the country, concentrating its activity in the rural areas. SIPAR’s goal is to open doors on the world through the pleasures of reading.
An Argentinean group of storytelling grandmothers who volunteer to read to groups of children at least once a week and provide literacy support in the home.
International Youth Library
Munich, Germany
The International Youth Library (IYL) in Munich, Germany, selects the best and most noteworthy newly published books from around the world each year—designating their picks the ‘The White Ravens.’

They then compile these selections into a ‘White Ravens Catalogue’, which the IYL presents each year at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair in Italy.

Unlike IBBY, their selections are not on a strictly one to one basis (i.e. one book from each country) but rather reflect ‘the best’ of the range of books that IYL has received over the year and whether or not they find the selections innovative and worthy of ‘special mention’ or compatible with ‘international understanding’—two special designations that they attach to certain titles (International’s Children’s Digital Library, 2009).

source: booksnotborders.wordpress.com
The International Youth Library is the world’s largest library for international children’s and youth literature. Founded in 1949 by Jella Lepman, it has grown to become the internationally recognized centre for children’s and youth literature.
Sponsored by: Asian Pacific American Librarians Association
Sponsored by: The Ezra Jack Keats Foundation
Manuel Monroy
Margarita Sada
Julian Cicero
Jazmin Velasco
La peor señora del mundo by Francisco Hinojosa
Publishing Challenges:
El Huevo Azul
by Silvia Jaeger Cordero
Los Especiales de la Orilla del Viento sponsored by Fondo de Cultura Economica, awarded to an unpublished author and illustrator

Guía de libros recomendados para niños y jóvenes (Guide to book recommended for children and young adults) sponsored by IBBY Mexico
Publishing Challenges:
Acclaimed Books
White Raven Winners: 52
Acclaimed Books
The Chinese children's book industry was also non-existent in the late 20th century. However, this was not due to an historical lack of children's books. Confucius said, "Young people are not human; they are merely in the process of becoming human," therefore youth literature as we think of it, expressing the lives of children on their level, did not exist in China before May 4, 1919 which marked the beginning of the New Culture Movement. Instead, children were taught through the rote memorization of philosophical and scholarly texts.

During the New Culture Movement intellectuals such as Feng Zikai and Zhou Zuoren, borrowing from Soviet and Western literature, began to adopt Romantic ideas of childhood and child development as a stage of freedom in life before the infringement of societal rules. However, China was still in a state of military and political turmoil and did not have a chance to develop these ideas into independent literature for children until the 1950s, relying on translations of books such as Peter Pan, and Alice in Wonderland until that point.

The boom of children's literature that started in 1950 ended with the Communist Cultural Revolution of 1966. Books from before that period were banned and were replaced by propaganda stories and magazines quoting Mao designed for children.

In 1980 economic restrictions were lessened and China was once again opened to the influence of the West, a trend which continues to this day. The two biggest shifts in Chinese children's literature have been the reduction of didacticism in storytelling and the influence of the One Child Policy. In both trends children's book authors have to find ways to connect to a new generation who is experiencing childhood very differently from their own Maoist upbringing.

In addition, the exponential expansion of the Chinese economy on the international market has produced a flood of translations from the West which are then sold to parents and grandparents in China. Today over 90% of children's content in China is imported.
Buying international children's books to raise standards.
Transitioning from didactic to empathetic writing.
Focus on educational publishing.
Illustrators have international demand.
Global Trends Overall
Generational differences
New media
Foreign competition
Pi Pilu and Lu Xixi
by Zheng Yuanjie
The Naughty Boy series
by Hong Ying Yang
by Xiong Lei and Xiong Liang
Big Head Son and Small Head Dad
by Zheng Chun Hua
Fengzikai Best Chinese Picture Book Award
The first international Chinese children's picture book award. It aims to continually encourage more investment in creative talent, and help promote the publication and wide distribution of high-quality, Chinese children's picture books and their importance in childhood literacy.

The Feng Zikai Chinese Children’s Picture Book Award was founded in 2008, thanks to generous sponsorship from Mrs Daisy Chen and Bring Me A Book™ Hong Kong.
Presented at the China Shanghai International Children's Book Fair the award goes to about twenty books in two categories: International Original Picture Books and China Original Picture Books.
China Shanghai International Children's Book Fair
(published originally by Hsin-Yi in Taiwain)
Publishing Challenges:
Acclaimed Books:
Fairs: Taipei International Book Exhibition
White Raven Winners: 10
All official Chinese publishers are state run and regulated. There are central and regional publishers.
Private publishers work under the title "culture agency".
Winner of the Bologna Children's Book Fair Best Publisher in Asia Award 2014
Hsin-Yi Publications
Let's Get Mung Beans, Momma!
by Wan Hua-gwo
by Chen Chih-yuan
Hsin Yi Picture Book Award/
Hsin Yi Childrens Literature Award
Taiwan has had a robust children's publishing industry for the last 30 years. Hsin-Yi was the first Taiwanese publisher to specialize in books for children and it is also a foundation promoting youth and family literacy. Throughout their publishing history they have supported burgeoning artists and authors.

Because Taiwan suffers from the same influx of translations as China many children's book writers do so only part time. Still, Taiwan attempts to independently produce high quality children's books, which is made slightly easier by the fact that they are a small country. Distribution is less of an issue than it is in China and Mexico.
Education standards
Potential for improvement
Taiwanese identity
Where to next?
Implementation Ideas
Cultural discovery book display in the Reading Library.
Bilingual storytimes.
Exhibition: "What is a picture book, globally?"
Outreach to international publishers for donations.
Further Research
Thanks for listening!
International picture book museums
Interest in English language acquisition
The next generation of children's book writers
An annual award the Hsin Yi Picture Book Award is the most prestigious award in Taiwan and cultivates a number of local illustrators. The award goes to unpublished picture book illustrators and authors in both Taiwan and Mainland China.
The Golden Tripod Awards were founded in 1976, with the aim of promoting a culture of reading, improving the quality of publications in Taiwan and recognizing outstanding Taiwanese publications and excellent publishers.The annual awards for publications cover three major categories — special contribution, magazine and book — which are divided into awards for literature, non-fiction and books for children and juveniles.
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