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Diverse Children’s Shakespeare

Date/Time: 2 November 2023 -2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

Diverse Children’s Shakespeare

Location: Heritage Room, Library of Birmingham (in-person event)

Likely to suit: adults & teenagers, and especially educators, parents & guardians, librarians, booksellers & keen readers of all ages.

Free but registration is required.

This event is inspired by popular activist movements like #BlackLivesMatter #WeNeedDiverseBooks #DecolonisetheCurriculum. First, explore the under-representation of ethnically diverse characters in, and creators of, children’s illustrated Shakespeare books. Then, discover a handful of diverse titles, series and mediums that have emerged in recent years. Find the ones to watch going forward! Consider how these diverse books can improve young readers’ sense of belonging and self-esteem in their first encounters with Shakespeare.

In the hands-on exhibition, get to grips with illustrated Shakespeare for children, some of it hot off the press and newly acquired by the Children’s Library. Other items transport you to recent and distant pasts through the Birmingham Shakespeare Collection. Panellists Koel Chatterjee (Trinity Laban, and Wendy Lennon (Shakespeare Institute, Oxford) give their takes on diversity in illustrated Shakespeare past, present and future. Short talks from Sarah Olive (Aston University, Jeunesse journal) and Lauren Jansen-Parkes (Everything to Everybody) introduce the issues and share ways to dive deeper into the Birmingham Shakespeare Collection and Children’s Library.

Venue, accessibility, and transport details are available on the booking site.

The event is funded by the ESRC (Economic and Social Research Council). It is just one of Aston University’s events as part of the ESRC Festival of Social Science. Find out more: @ESRC #ESRCFestival @EnglishAston @drsaraholive.

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