After Outrage Publisher Pulls Happy Slaves Children’s Book

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tags: slavery



Amidst growing criticism of a children's book depicting happy slaves baking a cake for George Washington, publisher Scholastic has announced it is pulling the book from retailers. In a statement to the Associated Press, Scholastic said this:

“While we have great respect for the integrity and scholarship of the author, illustrator and editor, we believe that, without more historical background on the evils of slavery than this book for younger children can provide, the book may give a false impression of the reality of the lives of slaves and therefore should be withdrawn.”

Earlier today The Root published this critique from Demetria Lucas-D'oxley.

I learned about Scholastic’s new children’s book, A Birthday Cake for George Washington, when a friend emailed me on Friday to ask, “Uh … have you seen this [expletive]?” Her note was accompanied by the book’s back cover, which depicted an illustration of a smiling enslaved man and child, accompanied by their beaming master—America’s first president, George Washington. Washington had his arm around the enslaved man’s shoulder like they were bros instead of oppressor and oppressed.




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