Was the Cat in the Hat Black?: The Hidden Racism of Children's Literature, and the Need for Diverse Books

By NEL, Philip

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ISBN
9780190635077
Publisher
Oxford Univ.


REVIEWS

School Library Journal

Starred Review on February 1, 2018  |  Professional Reading

In five essays, children's lit expert and Seuss scholar Nel (The Annotated Cat) critiques the insidious nature of racism in kids' books. These often eye-opening pieces help prove the author's case that Nancy Larrick's landmark article "All-White World of Children's Books" is unfortunately as relevant today as it was when it was first published in 1965. The title entry will challenge kid lit lovers to see beloved authors and books through the lens of critical race theory. Was the Cat in the Hat modeled after black face minstrelsy figures? Should "classics" be reprinted with t...Log In or Sign Up to Read More

Horn Book Magazine

Reviewed on August 1, 2017

Written in an avuncular style and very lightly lettered, Bruce Handy's Wild Things is a civilian's survey of a generous handful of canonical children's books--Goodnight Moon, The Cat in the Hat, Ramona the Pest, etc. Handy's approach includes anecdotes gleaned from his own childhood and fatherhood; some publishing history (probably already mostly known to Horn Book readers); and throughout, a palpable enthusiasm for the field. If telling us that In the Night Kitchen "is a story about sex" is perhaps less original or naughty than Handy seems to think it is, the author's account o...Log In or Sign Up to Read More

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