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ERIC Number: EJ1141155
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Jun
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0045-6713
Unforgivable Blackness: Visual Rhetoric, Reader Response, and Critical Racial Literacy
Gardner, Roberta Price
Children's Literature in Education, v48 n2 p119-133 Jun 2017
Perceptions of black representations in literature and other visual mediums as positive or negative continuously cause consternation and debate (Fleetwood, 2011). Because African American children are literacy participants and consumers, they are not immune from experiencing this tension. This essay considers the effects and affective threads of racism and racialization connected to visuality (Foster, 1988), and how educators might support and nurture children's roles as aesthetic critics and critical readers of books featuring racial imagery and representations. The young African American readers in this study resist a picturebook using colorist logic and macro-level social indexing of phenotypic traits. The author argues that negative social messages about blackness within the larger ethos of society, as well as the absence of diverse representations in children's literature, contribute to such interpretations. She suggests explicitly teaching African American children about counter-visuality and the ways in which "art works" to shape and transform understandings about complex experiences like racism.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A