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Abstract

In her paper "The Ambiguous Nature of Multiculturalism in Two Picture Books about 9/11," Jo Lampert looks at how some of the Western discourses of multiculturalism and cultural diversity have shifted since 11 September 2001 by discussing two exemplar picture books about 9/11. Lampert begins with a general discussion of children's books as significant cultural producers of knowledge and provides brief summaries of Patel's On That Day: A Book of Hope for Children and Carlson's There's a Big, Beautiful World Out There! Lampert discusses how the imagined readers of these books are positioned problematically in order to embrace racial tolerance, global harmony, and diversity while, at the same time, accepting white US-America as the symbol of goodness in the world. Lampert suggests that these texts are representative of the ways recent political agendas are present in texts that seem, as children's books, to be separate from politics.

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