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
Master of Arts
Department of Curriculum and Instruction
Division of School Library Studies
Joan Bessman Taylor
1 PDF file (60 pages)
©2020 Mari Butler Abry
Abry, Mari Butler, "Representation of Native peoples in picture books about Christopher Columbus: A literary analysis" (2020). Graduate Research Papers. 1420.