Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


This qualitative content analysis analyzes how Native peoples and their culture are represented in 21 children’s picture books published between 2008-2019, written for students in grades K-4, about Christopher Columbus or Columbus Day. The books were evaluated using Slapin, Seale, and Gonzalez’s (1992) framework: “How to Tell the Difference: A Checklist for Evaluating Children’s Books for Anti-Indian Bias.” This study found that books in the sample did not represent Native peoples well, with only four books having positive and detailed representations overall.The most common offense in the sample was a stereotypical portrayal of Native people. This study concluded that one cannot solely rely on Children’s Core (2020) recommendations and TitleWave (2020) reviews to provide books that accurately represent Native peoples, and that librarians and educators should seek additional tools to find quality representations of Native peoples in literature. This is even more imperative if books about Columbus are going to be added to libraries and classrooms despite our updated understanding of his role in the tyranny of colonization.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Department of Curriculum and Instruction


Division of School Library Studies

First Advisor

Karla Krueger

Second Advisor

Joan Bessman Taylor

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (60 pages)



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