Searching for multicultural literature in this global society ought to be easy. There are millions of books on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, not to mention 142 million books in the Library of Congress. Also, with the growing number of authors who write for children, finding multicultural literature for adolescents ought to be easy as well. Then why do I feel like salmon swimming upstream?
In the past three weeks I have scoured my school library, the public library (which encompasses the southwest suburbs of Chicago), and both Amazon and Barnes & Noble websites for young adult literature, either fiction or nonfiction, that would expand the minds of our youth and build tolerance. The selection was poor to say the least. All selections were from the point of view of another culture, but few were what I would call literature. Few were even what i would consider a good read. The reviews of those books I am saving for another post, because right now I need the help of our readers. My school has asked me to select books for any unit of study, and of course I chose a multicultural unit, but which books to choose? How many of each book do I want to order?
I need suggestions of books that fit the following criterion:
- Does the book meet the qualifications for good literature?
- Does the content intensify the reader’s sensitivity to the feelings of others?
- Does the story offer genuine insights into another lifestyle or culture?
(Bucher and Hinton, 2010)
Please send your suggestions as soon as possible. You can do this by leaving a comment below, leaving a comment on Joup’s Facebook Page or tweeting Joup @joupitter. There is no need to register with Joup to leave a comment, but please feel free to as there many great articles by excellent authors on this site. I’m so happy to be contributing here. I will do my best to locate the books, read them and perhaps teach them. My students and I thank you for your consideration.
Bucher, K. and Hinton, K. (2010) Young Adult Literature: exploration, evaluation, and appreciation. Boston: Allyn and Bacon.
Lisa is the Reading Specialist at a middle school in Tinley Park, Illinois. She has been teaching for eighteen years and earned both a Masters in Reading Specialist and a Masters in Educational Leadership. Books, music, movies, and education are her life!