Padma Venkatraman has long been interested in diversity. Her involvement began when she was a graduate student in oceanography and she used her knowledge of diversity (or the lack thereof) in science to inform her efforts to encourage diversity in the field of literature, when she jumped ship and became a full time writer. In fact, directly before she became a full-time author, Padma Venkatraman directed diversity efforts at the University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School.
Padma Venkatraman continues to write and speak about diversity. Her articles have been published by SLJ, Kirkus, Horn Book, PW, Nerdy Book Club, YA Wednesday and NYT Bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith‘s blog, among others.
Most recently, her daughter began a diversity and inclusion effort at her school. Here are a list of ideas that the two of them came up with together. You may feel free to adapt any of these ideas for use, but please do provide an acknowledgement.
General Diversity Resources
- Anti-racist booklist from Penguin Books
- Hijabi Librarian Article on Evaluating Books with Muslim Characters
- Dr. Debbie Reese’s Website with Reviews and Recommendations of Books with Indigenous Characters and Content
Some RI – related diversity resources:
- https://provcomlib.org/racial justice
- RI Black Heritage Society
- 1696 Heritage Group
- YouTube 3 part series on RI’s Black History
Some diverse book lists: