Book Week is the annual celebration of children’s books and authors organized at the University of Minnesota since 1941. The event attracts teachers, librarians, educators, students, and audiences passionate about young readers’ literacy. Over the past 78 years, Book Week has featured some of the most notable authors of children’s and YA literature, including Madeleine L’Engle, Kate DiCamillo, Christopher Paul Curtis, and Gene Luen Yang. Book Week is hosted by faculty and graduate students from the children’s literature program in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction. The guest author’s books are available for sale and autographing.
Join us on Thursday, November 7, 2019 at the McNamara Alumni Center, for a discussion with Donna Jo Napoli.
Donna Jo Napoli is the author of award-winning books for children as well as a prominent linguist, whose work ranges from mathematical analysis of folk dance to structures of American Sign Language. Born to Italian American parents, Napoli is best known for her emotionally gripping retellings of premodern folk and fairy tales, like Zel, The Magic Circle, The Great God Pan or Mogo, the Third Warthog, but her prolific work ranges across genres and formats. Most of her books deal with a loss or challenge and feature characters who develop the ability to overcome a disruption in their lives.
Title: "How I choose what to write about? Artistic freedom and the quest for social justice in the children's literature world"
Description: What makes a good character? A good plot? These questions are never easy to answer. But they have become even more difficult in the past decade because of the laudable desire to build an inclusive and socially-just body of children's literature. How can authors work toward that overall goal while still exploring the social and psychological intricacies and breadth of whatever fascinates them (or breaks their heart or makes them joyful) with the freedom necessary to all art? I will give my own, very personal, answers.
Please join us on Thursday, November 7, 2019 at the McNamara Alumni Center, for a discussion with Donna Jo Napoli.
Free and open to the public. CEUs available.
Donna Jo Napoli’s books will be available for purchase from the Red Balloon Bookshop.
Questions may be directed to Nick Kleese at firstname.lastname@example.org.