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"Columbus in Picturebooks: Enduring Images" Talk at Robeson Library - Wed. April 10th

Columbus in Picturebooks: Enduring Images talk at Robeson Library - Wed. April 10th

The Paul Robeson Library invites members of the campus community and the general public to a talk by visiting scholar Christina M. Desai on "Columbus in Picturebooks: Enduring Images" on Wednesday April 10th. The talk will be held in the lobby of the library starting at 12:20 pm and refreshments will be served.

The iconic image of Christopher Columbus landing in the New World, kneeling in thanks to God and claiming the land for Spain, has been reproduced in countless children's books. Columbus has long been a favorite biographical subject in children's books, where he has been portrayed as a courageous hero and visionary, driven by a daring idea for the glory of God and country. Yet historians have always known that Columbus's quest was more about gold and converts than God and country and this led him to ruthlessly exploit the indigenous peoples he encountered. In this presentation Professor Desai will examine images of Columbus in picturebooks from the last twenty years. What do these images convey about the man and his "discovery" and rule of the "New World"? Have they changed over time? She will look at the techniques and patterns used to show power relationships and to shape reader reaction, comparing the historic images to contemporary illustrations from these books.

Christina M. Desai is an Associate Professor and Librarian at the University of New Mexico. She is currently a Visiting Scholar with the Childhood Studies Department at Rutgers University. Her research in children's literature explores such topics as how children's books portray other countries, war and soldiers, and national identity in a multicultural society. She has also contributed numerous children's book reviews, and articles on library science.

For more information on this talk, please contact Vibiana Bowman.

Posted April 9, 2013