Friday, November 12, 2010

ALA to Creates Award for LGBT Children's Books

The American Library Association has announced that it is adding the Stonewall Children's and Young Adult Literature Award to its slate of prizes for children's literature. The award will honor "English-language works for children and teens of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered experience." There has been a Stonewall award for adult books for 40 years, but until now, no corresponding prize for kids' lit. However, says ALA president Roberta Stevens,

Millions of children in this country are being raised by gay or lesbian parents. There are young people who are gay and sometimes they feel very alone. This is a real opportunity for youths who may be feeling alone to read about other like themselves.

Unfortunately gay kids and kids with gay parents hearing all too often that stories about their families are immoral, inappropriate or dirty (one parent called And Tango Makes Three "a homosexual storyline that has been sugar-coated with cute penguins"). Hopefully the Stonewall awards will send these kids a better message and lead to the publication of more great books with a diversity of people represented.

No comments: