QUESTION: Children's books

question / pregunta: 

I'm looking for a "progressive" or "radical" children's booklist to help select books for my 6-year-old son. So far, the only thing I've found is the "Radical parenting reading list" at

radical children's books


That's a great question! I don't have a booklist per se for you, but here's a list of children's book awards, with winners, that you might be able to use:

I also recommend you seek out age-appropriate biographies of:

  • Rachel Carson
  • Cesar Chavez
  • Mother Jones
  • Margaret Sanger
  • Harriet Tubman
  • Malcolm X
  • Gandhi
  • etc.

In addition, here are some useful links:

children's books

Also, we have had a few similar questions before, but mainly for 9-12 years and older. Search Radical Reference (Box in upper left), for example: children* book* gets about 20 hits, including this question. Please note, all personal and contact information is removed from archived questions, except where librarians have included their own contact information.

Other possible sources might be ERIC or LISTA databases. Though these would probably not stray too far from mainline political and social points of view, they might well lead you to other sources which would be less mainline.

Jim Miller

'progressive' books

As a children's literature instructor at the university of New Mexico, I encourage my students to be critical reviewers of what they read looking for cultural sensitivity and authenticity.
Some books which are touted as award winners, may not be all that culturally sensitive to others.

Here are some links I hope you find helpful:

How to choose the best multicultural books at

UNM Children's Literature Blog at
(This blog includes web resources on the left-hand side)

Debbie Reese, Nambe Pueblo, writes prolifically on this topic. She maintains a blog at

Hope these help!
Frances Vitali, Ph.D.
UNM San Juan Center

Radical Seeks Enlightenment blog list

From the Radical Seeks Enlightenment blog, by way of the Anarchist Parenting list (forwarded by Vikki), Radical Children's Books: a Reference List.

Books separated into categories
Indigenous Resistance
General Anti-Authoritarian
Anti-Authoritarian Biographies
Direct Action
Queer Families
Animal Rights
Differently Abled
Awareness Activities

and a link to an outside Interracial bibliography

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