For the past couple of years, authors have been steadily incorporating more and more of a diverse set of characters. In doing so, not only do they appeal to a broader base of readers, but they also allow for a better story, as characters’ different characteristics contribute to the story in a positive light. Here are three different authors who approach diversity differently.
Where else can we begin but with the Queen herself? Ever since the full casting for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child was released back in December 2015, J.K. Rowling has shown great support for the casting of Noma Dumezweni as Hermione Granger, stating on Twitter:
“…White skin was never specified. Rowling loves black Hermione.”
In addition, Rowling has not only included British students at Hogwarts who are so beloved throughout the series, though also a fiery Seamus Finnigan (allegedly Irish) and Harry’s first crush Cho Chang (her surname having been listed among family surnames from the Song era).
Then there’s the troll of modern authors such as Rick Riordan. Known for impressive cliffhangers at the end of his books, his latest series, Heroes of Olympus, introduces readers to demigods of Chinese, Canadian, Native American, Hispanic, and African American heritage, in addition to the original demigods from the previous series. However, these new characters have no time for the typical stereotypes. Instead, they’re so busy saving the world (again) that their real personalities shine through.
Last, but certainly not least, is Kathryn Lasky. The author of the famous Owls of Ga’Hoole series, Lasky also contributed with other authors to a series entitled The Royal Diaries. This series, centered around some of history’s most famous women, starts off with the novel Elizabeth I: Red Rose of the House of Tudor, that tells the story of the trials and tribulations of one of England’s most famous monarchs. The series goes off from there, with other Lasky books such as Marie Antoinette: Princess of Versailles, Kazunomiya: Prisoner of Heaven, and Jahanara: Princess of Princesses. While this series isn’t sequential, it helps readers understand more about the cultures of civilizations past, and also appeals as an empowerment to modern women. Lasky and her books are not only accurate, but, powerfully, capture the reader’s imaginations.
Who’s your favorite author? Does he/she include diversity in his/her novel(s)?
Video courtesy of: Clevver News
Featured image via Vanderbilt Law