Emily gives us 3 books with representation

This week we’ve opened up our blog to our followers and friends to shead light on “representation” in childrens books in Sweden. We all agree that the Swedish context of diversity when it comes to childrens books are extremely limited and rarely caters the 20% of foreign minorities in Sweden.

With this in mind, our aim is to try and accommodate as many parents as possible with good Swedish books, without stereotypes to show a more diversified population and in the longterm also culturally inspire all childeren in Sweden. We recived so many wonderful reviews, unfortunately very few in Swedish, and they will all be published during this week with the #representation #merbarnkultur.  The reviews include the same four questions.

Today’s review is in English, from Emily Joof, International program manager for Mentor, world citizen having lived in over 6 different countries, founder of ”International educators connect”, she blogs on ”My Mummy Diaries” and also calls sweden her home.

Book no. 1Too Many Tickles.

Would you recommend it to someone between the age of 4-12?too many tickles
The book is very simple and shows a family including grandparents, interacting and having fun.

What made you recognize yourself?
The characters look like me and my daughter and that makes the book even more familiar and fun.

Did you have any refelctions when we approched you?
I like a book which has characters of African descent doing normal things. Sometimes I feel like most of the books I find with african/diaspora characters are  celebrating an event or teaching history or something similar. This book is just about being a family. We love that.

Book no. 2- I love my HairI love my hair

Would you recommend it to someone between the age of 4-12?
Yes, simple and easy to follow

What made you recognize yourself?
Growing up in west Africa my mum changed my hair every day. As an adult I still do the same and realized that this is seen as an indulgence that I afford myself, like some sort of vanity now that I live in Sweden. It is in fact simply the norm where I am from.

This book goes through various hairstyles and my daughter loves to see her hair mirrored in the book. The book celebrates the versatility of afro hair which is very important to us.


Book no. 3 – Amazing GraceAmazing grace

Would you recommend it to someone between the age of 4-12?
Yes, its super fun.

What made you recognize yourself?
The author came to Gambia when I was in school and decided to base the illustration of Grace on a friend of mine. There is something magical about reading adventures of a girl who is like you and who looks like someone you know! I was between around 10years old and I loved the gutsy, fun, creative character of grace.

Did you have any refelctions when we approched you?
I love these stories because I could place myself in the story so easily.

Nästa tips på temat representation publiceras 22/5, då följer vi 11-åriga Khoudia som tipsar om hennes favorit bok.



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