The latest edition newsletter of the Friends of the CCBC (Cooperative Children's Book Center in Madison WI) contained some exciting news.
Long known for it's excellent statistical data on children's books by and about people of color, the CCBC still receives many additional questions looking for additional data to put their statistics in perspective.
CCBC Director KT Horning writes:
"For 2016 we are launching a pilot project to do a more in-depth analysis of the year’s picture books (excluding non-fiction titles, such as picture-book biographies). We’re keeping track of the things people want to know. Just how many picture books have animal, rather than human, characters? How many books about African American characters are historical? How many feature LGBTQ families? Or Muslims? Or people with disabilities? We’ll be able to tell you in early 2017.
But for now, with about a quarter of the picture books that we’ve received to-date analyzed so far, we can tell you that:
- 45% of main characters are human beings, 43% are animals, and 15% are something else (such as a zucchini, a fairy or a cupcake)
- main characters are ten times more likely to be an animal than an African American person
- African American main characters have a two in three chance the character will be an athlete
- a main character that is an animal is three times more likely to be male than female
- a main character is more likely to be a spoon, a screw or a shape than Asian Pacific, First/Native Nations, Latino/a, or a person with a disability