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University Libraries - News, Events & Exhibits

"Celebrating Diversity in Children's and Young Adult Books: The Riches of USC's Irvin Department Collections"

Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections Gallery, Hollings Library

 

The Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections welcomes the 2014 Children’s Literature Association Conference, “Diverging Diversities: Plurality in Children’s and Young Adult Literature Then and Now” to Columbia, South Carolina. 

The newest exhibit in the Irvin Department Gallery is "Celebrating Diversity in Children's and Young Adult Books: The Riches of USC's Irvin Department Collections." The exhibit celebrates the riches of the Irvin Department’s children’s and young adult literature holdings and serves as the announcement of two substantial collections of children’s and young adult literature: the Graham-Kennett Collection of Children’s Literature and the Greta D. Little and Joel Myerson Collection of Multi-Cultural Children’s Literature.

The Graham-Kennett Collection, built by retired children’s literature professor Dr. Jill Gilbert, has a special emphasis on prize-winning children’s and young adult literature from around the world. In addition to contemporary fiction and fantasy, the collection includes poetry, folk and fairy tales, historical works, as well as facsimiles and texts for research.

The Little Myerson Collection represents a lifetime of collecting by retired USC professors Greta Little and Joel Myerson. Dr. Little’s collection took a new direction when she went to Morocco on a Fulbright Fellowship in 1993. After Dr. Myerson retired he expanded the focus of the collection to include the Inuit, the native peoples of the Northwest, the Maori of New Zealand, the Australian Aboriginals, and other peoples of Polynesia, the South Pacific, and the Pacific Rim.

The exhibit is the first opportunity for the public to see highlights from these new collections. In addition, it also provides us with the opportunity to announce the creation of the Karen Alane Robinson Fellowship for research in children’s and young adult literature. The Fellowship, together with the Robinson Family Endowment and continued community support will insure the continued development of our children’s and young adult literature collections and programming for many years to come.

Shown above: Original artwork for the exhibit created by USC Art Professor Karen Heid.