Last night, friend and colleague Edith Campbell's page on Facebook had a visit from writer, Meg Rosoff, who objected in shameful ways to calls for diversity. Rosoff said kids who are looking for representations of themselves should "read a newspaper" and that people calling for diversity should "write a pamphlet" about it. She said that books don't have agendas. She said a lot of things.
Edi wrote it up at her site. Go read it. It sparked a great deal of conversation on Twitter.
Are you wondering what Rosoff's response to all of this is? Here you go:
God, Rosoff, you are something else. Last year, I started to read her Picture Me Gone. It was on the short list for the National Book Award. I got to this part and quit reading:
"Indian squaw"? At that point in Picture Me Gone her characters are in a cafe. Items on the wall are what look very old. She didn't need that line about that painting in her book. Removing it wouldn't change the book at all. Having it there, however, is a microaggression. She's using a slur.
I wonder what words she uses to describe that "native American woman" in her next book? I have lots of questions about that plot. Why is the black kid in love with that woman? What is her nation? What is her name?
She hasn't written characters like this before. My guess is she's trying to cash in on the call for diversity. But, as her remarks on Edi's page show, she is no ally to the call for diversity.
I'm hitting the upload button on this post. I may be back with updates...
Update, Oct 11, 2015, 4:27 PM
Back to add links to blog posts in response to Rosoff.
- Linda Sue Park's Dear Meg
- Bibliodaze's The Unbearable Whiteness of Meg Rosoff: A Dissection
- Kaye's This is How I Live: An Open Letter to Meg Rosoff
- K.T. Horning's Spouting Off While White
- Camryn Garrett's this is how the industry lives now: five signs that you might be suffering from white privilege
October 12, 2015, 10:22 AM
- Hannah Gomez's thoughts about Kaye's Open Letter
- Nafiza's In Defence of Diversity AKA What the Heck, Meg Rosoff
- Sarah's Empty yearning, white nonsense, and Meg Rosoff
- Molli's Our Stories Aren't Agendas
- Robert Bivouac's Where the Mirrors Are
- Better than the Movie (podcast) Episode 34: Nine Million Dollars
October 14, 2015, 3:35 PM
- Idi Zoboi's Reading While Black
October 15, 2015, 2:25 PM
- Heather Allen's Meg Rosoff and the Diversity Problem
- Philip Ellis at Huffington Post: Meg Rosoff is Wrong
October 16, 2015, 8:45 AM
- Awitin Mo's Reasons I Checked Out of the Diversity Discussion Du Jour
- Ardo Omer's Meg Rosoff Believes Good Lit Does Not Have the "Job of Being a Mirror"
- Edith Campbell's #LargeFearsRecapped