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Re: Inclusion in the book arts



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 todays 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 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, 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 anyone new to the subject, I
do my best to provide good background information first.  Usually
after that I have their interest.

Martha Jackson


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