vlion: cut of the flammarion woodcut, colored (Default)
[personal profile] vlion
I have a son now.

This is mostly good. Except for the poop, puke, and pee. And the lack of language. And the lack of sleep. So maybe... it's good in a few years... And mostly potential today? Yes. That feels right.

But that's not what I'm posting about. I'm trying to find books to read to my boy - name of M - that weren't written in the 1920-1960 era. It can be picture books or chapter books; we read news to him, or textbooks, or essays, or the Wind in the Willows. He's quite young, so we've not gotten too fiddly about Age Appropriate Books.
 

I don't want my boy growing up to be locked into early 20th century norms
 Things like mom staying home. Things like boys and girls needing to fight. Things like everyone everywhere being white. Things like idolizing That Real Country Life. I grew up with that, and by and large I've had to break out of that. It's got its place, but it needs to be locates in the past where it belongs. Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn aren't good to read anymore when too young, because black people were treated real bad. M doesn't need to absorb those prejudices before he can question the text.

M should be reading - or have read to - books where brown people are heros. Where girls are fierce fighters.  Where Mom works. Where urban life is fun and enjoyable.  We will hit the racist ruralist ideolgies soon enough, and that's something I hope we can work through in literature before we do in real life.


I don't want to build a baby activist - that's on M to choose - but I want his early books to reflect the world we live in - Seattle 2017. Or NYC. Or Boston. Or Portland, OR. Or San Francisco.

Book recommendations requested!

Date: 2017-02-03 08:59 pm (UTC)
foxfirefey: A wee rat holds a paw to its mouth. Oh, the shock! (thoughtful)
From: [personal profile] foxfirefey
Have you been to the children's section of the library at the main Seattle branch? I've been there before and they make real efforts to have the kind of books around that you are describing, and a librarian there would be able to give you some really good recommendations to keep in your back pocket.

I can say that The Princess and The Pony is pretty darn cute.

Date: 2017-02-07 08:04 pm (UTC)
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
From: [personal profile] azurelunatic
*locates a nearby-ish librarian, too*

Date: 2017-02-03 09:27 pm (UTC)
mathemagicalschema: A blonde-haired boy asleep on an asteroid next to a flower. (Default)
From: [personal profile] mathemagicalschema
I made off with a whole box of kids books from my dad's house - if I get a chance to visit, I'd be happy to bring some around!

It's *mostly* classics, but there's definitely a fair few without so much ~traditional~ gender crap. I'll keep my eye out at bookstores, too!

Date: 2017-02-04 09:17 am (UTC)
steorra: Illumination of the Latin words In Principio erat verbum (books)
From: [personal profile] steorra
Here's a post by a contact of mine with a short list of recommended children's books featuring nonwhite characters. The LJ edition of the post has a few more suggestions in comments.

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vlion: cut of the flammarion woodcut, colored (Default)
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