Tag Archives: picture books

Gender Representation in a Selection of Children’s Picture Books: A Skewed Ratio of Male to Female Characters?

Heather MacArthur, Carmen Poulin*, University of Brunswick

Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v10/macarthur.html

Abstract The present research investigates the ratio of male to female characters in a selection of 92 children’s picture books chosen at random from the local library of a small Atlantic Canadian city. Results indicate that, consistent with past findings, male characters are depicted more often than female characters in the titles, cover illustrations, main characters, and page illustrations of the sample. When the results are broken down, however, it is apparent that human male and human female characters are depicted relatively equally, while male animals are represented significantly more often than female animals. Reasons for these findings and the implications for young readers are discussed. 

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