We are delighted to join the Nonfiction Picture Book meme 2019 hosted by Alyson Beecher @ Kid Lit Frenzy. We would also be linking our nonfiction choices with our reading themes throughout the year, when we can.
Little Dreamers: Visionary Women Around The World
Written and Illustrated by Vashti Harrison
Published by Puffin (2018)
ISBN: 0241346878 (ISBN13: 9780241346877)
Borrowed from the Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.
A little over a month ago, I shared Vashti Harrison’s Little Leaders: Bold Women In Black History (see my review here). This week, I am excited to share her more recent publication that does not only feature Bold Black Women, but visionary women from around the world.
In her Introduction, Harrison elaborated that she does not ascribe to the seeming dichotomy between science and art, believing that for anyone to be considered visionary, one often needs to straddle multiple disciplines:
… I also wanted to challenge the idea of what creativity can be. It’s a term commonly associated with artists rather than scientists. But both fields require critical thinking and inventiveness, I wanted to see the stories of all these people in the same place because when their efforts cross over, amazing things can happen.
She shared mini-biographies of 36 and 14 mini-profiles of visionary women in this compilation – from as far back as the 9th century in Tunisia, Morocco – to a woman born in 1977; there are a few who are still living such as Maya Lin and Cindy Sherman to cite a few.
Naturally, I was drawn to the narratives of women of colour: the activist from India, the entrepreneur from Ghana, the organic chemist also from India.
It is to Vashti Harrison’s credit that there are clear efforts made to provide representation of little-known visionary women from other parts of the world, even though a larger percentage of women still come from the US or the UK – although marked efforts were made to highlight migrant or native women from these countries. An example of this would be the inclusion of a woman coming from an Aboriginal Community in Queensland, Australia to represent Down Under.
I would once again repeat what I have noted in my review of the first book, however, that I would have preferred the women to appear woke (should we say #WokeWomen, please) – as opposed to the demure-looking, seemingly-servile attitude implicitly conveyed in the women’s downcast eyes. Regardless, this is a gorgeous book to add to anyone’s library.
#WomenReadWomen2019: Vashti Harrison is from the United States of America.