On March 16, an all-too-familiar tragedy struck in my hometown, Atlanta. Whenever there is a hate crime, especially one that ends lives, I feel broken. There are 8 people in my town who will not get to achieve their dreams, kiss their kids good night or be kissed on the head by a loving parent. Eight people who were at work or running errands who will never make it home. The women who were targeted by the murderer were cast in his mind as actors in his fantasy. Others were caught in the hail of fire.
We don’t have a definitive motive for the atrocity other than a possible sexual addiction, but we are all painfully aware of stereotypes around Asian-American women and submissiveness or availability. We have borne painful witness to hateful slurs and attacks as frightened people seek to link Covid-19 to a country or ethnicity. It has to stop. Dehumanizing people is not funny and it never was.
The brokenness I feel makes me want to cover the world in books. Books where people of color are the stars of their own stories, where they follow their own dreams rather than being the subject of others’ fantasies.
These great kids’ books for ages 0-13 are a great place to start introducing your kids to female Asian-American characters who take center stage. These are all books with a female Asian-American character written by women authors of Asian descent. Jambo subscribers, please note that 0-2 year olds will receive Up to My Knees in April and Eyes that Kiss in the Corners is going out to our 3-4 year olds in September.
Shop the entire list here.