Description from GoodReads: If you had to name a statue, any statue, odds are good you'd mention the Statue of Liberty. Have you seen her?
She's in New York.
She's holding a torch.
And she's in mid-stride, moving forward.
In this fascinating, fun take on nonfiction, Dave Eggers and Shawn Harris investigate a seemingly small trait of America's most emblematic statue. What they find is about more than history, more than art. What they find in the Statue of Liberty's right foot is the powerful message of acceptance that is essential to an entire country's creation.
My thoughts on the book...
It is hard these days not to get a little political with some of my nonfiction posts. As I wrote this review, we were waiting to hear whether the president would end the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. A few weeks ago, White House spokesperson Steven Miller and a journalist had a heated exchange about Emma Lazarus' famous poem at the base of the Statue of Liberty. And issues surrounding immigrants and immigration laws have been in the news constantly the past several months.
Eggers likely envisioned this book and began work on it long before the current political climate and didn't expect how timely it would be, and important. Learning about our history and the symbols that communicate much about what our country stands for.
In HER RIGHT FOOT, Eggers and Harris have created a book that not only shares the history of one of our most famous statues but also reminds us of the need for diversity and inclusion.
I hope that as children read through this book they will learn new facts about the Statue of Liberty and her origin and journey from France to the United States.
And I am thankful for Eggers's focus on "her right foot". I like many others are accustomed to seeing the upper body of Lady Liberty holding her torch up high. It never occurred to me to think about her feet and the sense of movement conveyed by her one leg and foot.
Though The New Colossus poem by Emma Lazarus was added later, it cemented the role of Lady Liberty as a symbol welcoming immigrants.
For more information about the Statue of Liberty, click here.
HER RIGHT FOOT
Children's Illustration Project
Here's How to Enter:
1. Read this excerpt from the book with a child 12 years old or younger and encourage them to illustrate something inspired by the theme or imagery. We encourage teachers and librarians to share with their students!
2. Take a photo of the illustration(s) and post on Twitter or Instagram (if your profile is public) with the hashtag #HerRightFoot. Please include the first name of the child illustrator and a few words about what the Statue of Liberty means to them.
3. Don’t want to post on social media? Scan or take a photo of the illustration(s) and upload using the "Enter" tab.
4. Alternatively, you can mail a copy of the illustration with your contact details to:
Dave Eggers, c/o Chronicle Books, 680 Second St., San Francisco, CA 94107
Update: Chronicle Books has extended the submission deadline date until December 31st!
Look for HER RIGHT FOOT (when it comes out) at your local indie bookstore or public library.
Don't forget to link up your nonfiction reviews...