S3 E1: Black History Month and Children’s Literature

03 Feb 2022
S3 E1: Black History Month and Children’s Literature

In the first episode of Season Three of The Empty Chair, Mandisa Haarhoff, lecturer in English and Literary Studies at the University of Cape Town, interviews Jehan Jones-Radgowski, author and Acting Public Affairs Officer for the US Consulate General in Cape Town.

Jehan explains the origins and significance of Black History Month, which is celebrated annually in February in the US.

They also discuss Jehan’s books (including The Escape of Robert Smalls: A Daring Voyage Out of Slavery, John Lewis: Get to Know the Statesman Who Marched for Civil Rights and The Emancipation Proclamation Inkstand: What an Artifact Can Tell Us About the Historic Document), the challenges of writing about history for young readers, diversity and representation in children’s literature, and centring children’s experiences – in the past and in the present.

In this episode we stand in solidarity with poet, lyricist and activist Galal El-Behairy. He should have been released in July 2021 after he served his full sentence of three years of imprisonment. However, he remains in arbitrary pre-trial detention in Egypt. Read more about his case here: https://pen-international.org/news/day-of-the-imprisoned-writer-2019-galal-el-behairy

Listen here: