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Re: Inclusion in the book arts



Because I did not see my comment on the list, I am resubmitting it.
Please pardon me if it did appear:

I agree with Ms. Johnson-Vosberg's recommendations:  contacting the
local community leaders, making announcements, etc.  Those methods could
work even better when all involved are given good background information
about the program.  The information should include:  the history of book
art; how it fits into today's art; show-and-tell; and any other means of
explanation.  How else can most people immediately embrace something
that is totally new to them?  Children in particular need to see, hear,
and know how a new thing can enhance their quality of life.  To intrigue
them usually one has to be creative in showing them how something is
enjoyable, useful, and practical.  Minority children are no different
than other children in this respect.

Mr. Siebert's remark, "books are only valued by those who grow up with
them", is totally, totally false.  I personally know people--minority,
majority, whomever--who did not grow up with many books in their lives
but are now book lovers, readers, teachers, etc.  People like this are
all around us.

One should not always assume that because a person or group does not
immediately or ever accept an activity that he/she or they are not
interested and not capable of being reached.  There could be many, many
underlying reasons why there is a lack of group or individual
participation:  a lack of understanding, a lack of time, a lack of
money, a lack of motivation, personal problems, etc.

To me giving up on reaching out to any one group of people means giving
up on life and supporting separatism.  Whenever I discuss book art,
bookbinding, or book conservation with someone who is new to the topic,
I try to provide necessary background information (history, examples,
etc.).  Usually after that I have their interest and understanding.

Martha J.


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