"The ALSC stated though, that her books "[include] expressions of stereotypical attitudes inconsistent with ALSC's core values" based on Wilder's portrayal of black people and Native Americans. Wilder was presented the first award in 1954, after which it was named for her and presented every five years between 1960 and 1980, every three years between 1980 and 2001, every two years between 2001 and 2015 and annually since then.
The decision to nix her name on the award, changing it from the "Laura Ingalls Wilder Award" to the "Children's Literature Legacy Award" comes after a unanimous vote by the Association of Library Service to Children's board.
Despite the tremendous success of the semiautobiographical series, the Chicago-based American Library Association over the weekend chose to rescind Wilder's Medal for Excellence in Children's literature, a prestigious designation in the children's literary world.
"While the answer to racism is not to impose purity retroactively or to disappear titles from shelves, no 8-year-old Dakota child should have to listen to an uncritical reading of Little House on the Prairie".
A letter from the ALSC board noted the "complexity" of the issue and "the emotion surrounding it", and also acknowledged Wilder's books "have been deeply painful to many readers".
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In addition, in another scene, Wilder depicts white men wearing blackface for the entertainment of others - including her father.
In a March column for The Washington Post, after the association announced that it was considering stripping Wilder's name from the award, Fraser argued the library association "evokes the anodyne view of literature" that it has fought against, and that no book, "including the Bible, has ever been "universally embraced".
"I absolutely would (read the books again)", Miller said.
"Each generation revises the literary canon".
Perhaps this worldview could be more easily dismissed if it were entirely fictional, but the "Little House" books are semi-autobiographical, and recount Wilder's own childhood growing up on the Great Plains. "For decades, her legacy has been awash in sentimentality, but every American ... should learn the harsh history behind her work".