This literature review addresses the issues surrounding accessibility of culturally diverse children’s literature in libraries, including the importance of making diverse literature accessible, the availability of such titles on the market, library collection development of diverse books, and selection criteria among children. These issues, in sum, determine how many books are available to children, how they are made available, and if children will even choose to read them. The review shows that the data is unclear on many points regarding the benefits of diverse literature, though intuitive claims of the positive influence of such titles are not discounted. It also finds low representation of diversity in publishing and library collections. Finally, studies of how children select reading materials are presented, showing that there is not a straightforward correlation between having books available and children choosing them. Areas of further research are recommended to give librarians more insight into how to better optimize collection resources to best benefit all young readers.

About Author

Renee I. Ting is a MLIS graduate student at San Jose State University.