Margaret M. Mason & Floyd Cooper
Houghton Mifflin, 2011 (2011)
Reviewed by Hilary Daninhirsch
rogress in the elimination of racism is the theme in this eye-opening children's picture book. In easy to understand yet powerful language, the book is told in the voice of an African-American grandfather, teaching his grandchild all that he can do with his hands, all that he was not able to do in the past, and how his grandchild has opportunities to do anything now.
Look at these hands, Joseph.
Did you know these hands were not allowed to mix the bread dough in the Wonder Bread Factory?
Did you know these hands were not allowed to touch the bread dough in the Wonder Bread factory?
These hands were only allowed to sweep the floors and work the line and load the trucks.
Because the bosses said white people would not want to eat bread touched by these hands.
Now any hands can mix the bread dough, no matter their color.
Now any hands can touch the bread dough, no matter their color.
Yes, they can.
he drawings are beautiful, displaying muted sepia-toned watercolors throughout the pages. An author's note provides a detailed background to this story, which is based on an oral history of workers in the Wonder Bread and other food production factories.
his exceptionally well-done picture book belongs in all school and even home libraries as it is a wonderful and gentle introduction to a sensitive subject.
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