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Black publishing power

We Need Diverse Books

The Prairie State College Library has taken the challenge proposed Amistad books to purchase and support Black writers. We further want to take the set to highlight the scholarship and writing of Black writers currently available in the Prairie State Library catalogue.



We believe it is important in this moment for all of us in the publishing industry to specifically acknowledge how anti-Blackness within our industry has contributed to the ongoing oppression of Black people. The publishing industry continues to uphold a system of institutional racism that oppresses, tokenizes, and shuts out Black people, who make up more than 13% of the US population but only 5% of the publishing workforce (and just 1% of Editorial!). Our industry has denied Black readers the opportunity to see themselves in books, and has put Black people at risk by continually centering White voices. We stand in solidarity with Black authors, illustrators, educators, librarians, readers, and publishing professionals. We commit to uplifting Black voices, stories, and creators through our work, and we hope our industry peers will do the same. It is our job and the job of every publisher in our industry to not only shed light on the pervasiveness of systemic racism and anti-blackness within our industry, but to actively dismantle it. [Authorship statistics in the above infographic reflect the percentage of Black children's book creators in 2018, as reported by the Cooperative Children's Book Center, School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison. No comprehensive authorship statistics on the adult publishing side exist, as far as we are aware. All other data was pulled from the Diversity Baseline Survey 2.0, released in 2019 from Lee & Low Books.]

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