Tikvah: Children's Book Creators Reflect on Human Rights

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9781587170973: Tikvah: Children's Book Creators Reflect on Human Rights

Natalie Babbit, Eric Carle, Jerry Pinkney, and celebrated illustrators have compiled their work in this insightful book about human rights for young adult readers. Simultaneous. 20,000 first printing.

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From School Library Journal:

Gr 8 Up-This handsome volume, in which 45 American contemporary children's book illustrators reflect, in words and pictures, on their understanding and their commitment to human rights, demonstrates that the concept is a slippery one. The work was originally published in 2001 as a limited edition to accompany the dedication of the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center at the University of Connecticut in Storrs. It is now being reissued for a larger audience. The illustrations were made by the artists for the project and the short accompanying texts are, for the most part, original. Tikvah is the Hebrew word for hope, which is in short supply as these artists see their world. Beginning alphabetically with Natalie Babbitt, whose balanced scales of justice depict things not as they are but "the way I have always thought they ought to be," and concluding with Ed Young's observation that "In human affairs, `balance' is crucial," the contributors weigh in heavily on the side of global problems. Pieces touch on war, environmental degradation, abortion, bullying, racial prejudice, child labor, the invisible poor, lack of education, murder, child abuse, euthanasia, and denial of freedom of speech. Only occasionally do they describe moments of joy, basic freedoms, love of the natural world, dreams, hopes, and human dignity. The overall effect is a sobering reminder that however we may define the phrase, for many in the world, human rights are still a distant goal.

Kathleen Isaacs, Edmund Burke School, Washington, DC

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

Originally published in a limited edition in 2001 by the University of Connecticut, this handsomely produced volume affords 45 children's author/illustrators the opportunity to reflect on various aspects of human rights. Each contributor receives a spread, with one page for text and the facing page for art. Despite the book's title (the Hebrew word for "hope") the entries frequently strike notes of caution and even outrage. Some employ vague or general terms, but most focus on specific issues or injustices. Normand L. Chartier and Ruth Sanderson condemn abortion; Lillian Hoban, Marianna Mayer and Jeanette Winter decry child labor practices; William Joyce describes joining the first integrated class at his Louisiana middle school; Betsy and Giulio Maestro discuss the importance of teaching tolerance to ensure religious freedom; Anita Lobel, in an excerpt from No Pretty Pictures, underscores the horror of the Holocaust; and Gloria Jean and Jerry Pinkney crusade against childhood hunger. The illustrations range in tone from comforting (Emily Arnold McCully depicts a child, a towhead in overalls, watching the autumn leaves fall) to the unsettling (Trina Schart Hyman paints a woman whose breasts have been cut away at the hands of two "doctors" representing Patriarchy and Technology: "They have poisoned her with their chemicals, so her hair is gone and her mind and eyes are dead"). Adult rather than young fans of the contributors will be the likeliest audience. Ages 14-up.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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