NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Back to results
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ984591
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 11
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 52
ISSN: ISSN-1521-7779
In Search of the Ideal Reader for Nonfiction Children's Books about el Dia de Los Muertos
Davila, Denise
Journal of Children's Literature, v38 n1 p16-26 Spr 2012
In mainstream American culture, death is not usually talked about openly. It is discussed privately among adults because death is often regarded as a final ending. Nevertheless, many elementary school teachers discuss el Dia de los Muertos with their students. The celebration of el Dia de los Muertos, in contrast to dominant ideology, commemorates death as an inseparable part of life; death is not an end, but rather a transition in the life cycle. Some teachers borrow nonfiction children's books about el Dia de los Muertos from public libraries and utilize them in their classrooms as part of a culturally competent and responsive curriculum to enhance their students' cultural literacy and affirm their students' diverse local and global experiences (Ladson-Billings, 2001; Villegas & Lucas, 2002). In this study, the author critically analyzes eight popular nonfiction children's books about el Dia de los Muertos (the Day of the Dead) that are circulated by major public libraries. Her analysis is guided by one question: Who are the ideal readers for these books and how are they positioned in relation to the celebration of el Dia de los Muertos? After establishing a conceptual framework and providing background information about el Dia de los Muertos, she will discuss her analysis of the books, the results of which indicate that nonfiction multicultural children's literature is not ideologically neutral. (Contains 3 figures.)
Children's Literature Assembly. 940 Vandalia Road, Morgantown, WV 26501. Tel: 304-291-2393; Fax: 304-291-2393; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A