Democracy in Picturebooks from Sweden and the United States, 2000-2020 explores democracy-themed picturebooks written for children between the ages of three and ten. With multiple analyses of picturebooks throughout the twenty-first century, the authors illustrate how picturebooks can play a vital role in the development of children’s perceptions about the different principles of democracy. From a holistic perspective, these books can be seen as the starting point for socializing children who will come to lead and participate in democratic societies themselves. The multi-pronged approach in this research introduces: (a) concepts underlying the role of picturebooks in familiarizing children with concepts about democracy, (b) research methods for picturebook analyses, (c) exploration of specific exemplar picturebooks that address democratic principles, (d) how picturebooks link democracy with human qualities, (e) utilizing democracy-themed picturebooks in the home and the school. This project holds the promise of promoting meaningful instruction of democracy through the use of picturebooks.
Mary Alice Barksdale is professor emeritus at the School of Education at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
Getahun Yacob Abraham is senior lecturer at Borås and Karlstad Universities.
Chapter 1: Background and Framework for Inquiry on Picturebooks with Democratic Themes
Chapter 2: Approach to the Examination of Democracy-Themed Picturebooks
Chapter 3: Messages about Democracy in Narrative/Fiction Picturebooks
Chapter 4: Components of Democracy in Expository Picturebooks
Chapter 5: Depictions of Democracy in Biography and Historical Fiction
Chapter 6: Iconotext - Illustrations and their Relationships to Texts and Democracy
Chapter 7: Representations of Human Qualities within the Picturebooks
Chapter 8: Issues and Outcomes from the Democracy Picturebook Analyses
Picturebook Reference List