In Children’s Books, A New Voice

Lucy Gellman PhotosJuan Bobo. Frida Kahlo. Diego Rivera. Dom Luis Martino Martin. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

For a long time, they were united by one common narrative thread: rich life stories right out of the twentieth century, celebrating creatives, thinkers and advocates that weren’t pale-skinned, blonde-haired, or blue-eyed.

Now, they are also brought together by author-illustrator Carmen T. Bernier-Grand, who has honored them in her richly illustrated children’s books. Bernier-Grand appeared in the WNHH studio with OneWorld Progressive Institute‘s N’Zinga Shani to talk about why these characters — from the folk tales of Juan Bobo to Sotomayor’s journey from rebellious toddler to Supreme Court Justice — have meant so much to her as a professional. For her, a transplant from Puerto Rico , the stories simply needed to be told.

It’s a trend she wants to see continuing among future generations of professionals. 

“We need more authors and more illustrators, and the ones that we need are the minorities,” she said.

To hear more, click on the audio above. You can also download the episode for free from Soundcloud, iTunes or any podcatcher by searching under “WNHH Community Radio.”

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