Laura Ingalls Wilder's Name Removed From Children's Literature Award
28 June, 2018, 09:13 | Author: Christina Harvey
"Only Indians lived there", implied that Native Americans were not people-in response, the publisher then changed "people" to "settlers".
"We believe it is not beneficial to the body of literature to sweep away her name as though the perspectives in her books never existed", they said. She added that no book, "including the Bible, has ever been 'universally embraced'".
The association says the work of Wilder - best known for her "Little House on the Prairie" novels that chronicled her youth in Wisconsin and Minnesota - "includes expressions of stereotypical attitudes inconsistent with ALSC's core values".
In "Little House on the Prairie", Wilder wrote, "Their Faces were bold and fierce and awful".
A number of commentators disagreed with the change, with one, history and economics author Lori Ann LaRocco, saying Wilder "inspired me to be an author and to be fearless". But she also says your average 8-year-old shouldn't have to read the "Little House" books without some background.
In a March Washington Post column, Caroline Fraser, who wrote Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder, argued for continuing support and reading of the Little House books.
Demonizing those Native Americans as the defacto bad guys of a series of books might be a way to teach racism, but it makes sense that the ALSC doesn't want to continue to name its highest honor after these stories. They found her descriptions of Native Americans, and sometimes her depictions of African-Americans, racist.
In addition, in another scene, Wilder depicts white men wearing blackface for the entertainment of others - including her father. Fraser stated that Wilder's work "vividly, unforgettably ... still tells truths about white settlement, homesteading and the violent appropriation of Indian land and culture".
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